Under the Hood

Dark Chocolate For Depression: Does It Work?

For a great deal of reasons, chocolate has been the subject of various studies throughout the past few years.

As one of the most popular food or dessert around, it’s widely known for its distinct flavor and smooth texture. Made by grinding dried cocoa beans, it’s garnered itself a well-deserved reputation, urging people to research all of its potential health benefits.

However, experts have long decided that it’s something that should be enjoyed in moderation, given its high sugar and fat content. That being said, some are still positive that the food has more secrets yet to be unlocked. And so the studies continue.

Dark chocolate and depression

The recent addition to the growing body of research centered on it is by courtesy of the University College London in the United Kingdom, which studied the link between dark chocolate and depression. Per the survey-based research, people who eat or consume dark chocolate apparently has a lesser chance of suffering from depression.

Taking data from the United States National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey , the research team was able to get 3,626 participants aged 20 years or older. Using the Patient Health Questionnaire, the team then went and assessed depressive symptoms. They also studied dark chocolate and non-dark chocolate separately.

The results showed that there was no connection between reduced depressive symptoms and non-dark chocolate. However, the data was different when dark chocolate was placed into the equation.

" [I]ndividuals who reported any dark chocolate consumption had 70% lower odds of reporting clinically relevant depressive symptoms than those who did not report any chocolate consumption,” wrote the authors.

Despite that, lead author, Dr. Sarah Jackson, believes that more research is needed to clarify the current outcome of the findings. Nevertheless, she believes it was a success and sheds some more light on what chocolate can do for our bodies, be it physical or mental.

Why depression?

Depression is one of the world’s current biggest issues and is usually treated by medication and therapy. However, both of this doesn’t always work since depression can be different for everyone.

As of now, finding lifestyle interventions to reduce one’s symptoms is a top priority.

Dark Chocolate Two studies have found health benefits in dark chocolate which is high in cacao and low in sugar. Charisse Kenion/Unsplash

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