So, what is the reasoning behind chocolate and love?
It is thought that the association between love and chocolate may go all the way back thousands of years to the Aztecs, a Pre-colomumbian people of central Mexico in the 14th, 15th and 16th centuries The belief of the culture was that chocolate was a source of spiritual wisdom,increased sexual prowess and aided energy, and accordingly it was often served as part of a wedding ceremony.
With our knowledge today, we have a better understanding of why chocolate is a mood enhancing sweet treat.
Chocolate contains a natural, mood changing – PEA, or phenethylamine . This PEA is the substance which increases in the brain when we fall in love. So, eating chocolate actually produces similar brain chemistry to that of being in love.
If you consider the pleasure of receiving a nicely wrapped box of chocolates, or slowly opening the foil of your favourite flavour infused bar, inhaling the smell of the carefuly blended flavours, then taking a bite, and the feel of the chocolate as it melts on your tongue. Add these together, and the effect is to fill your mouth and senses with that comforting, pleasurable sensation.
It really is no wonder that we consider chocolate to be the chosen gift of lovers.
So, next time you are going to open a bar of chocolate, take a minute, and a breath, unwrap the foil slowly, inhale and enjoy. More often than not, if we chose to we can find great pleasure in the small things.
Oh and of course, don’t forget to give the gift of chocolate this Valentine’s day.