Hey chocoholics, have you bothered to ask yourself, “Why do I sneeze when I eat chocolate?” My point is, you may have found yourself sneezing after consuming chocolate, only to hinge the cause of such reaction on something else. But have you bothered to find out why such a thing happens anytime you pick up a bar of chocolate to eat? Well, it might just be the culprit, you know. Anyway, here’s what you need to know about the question;
Why you sneeze whenever you are eating chocolate
Chocolate comes produced with a variety of ingredients, not just cocoa powder, which is the main ingredient. Therefore, your reaction could be as a result of any of the ingredients. It could be because you are allergic or sensitive to the cocoa powder, milk products, caffeine, peanuts, tree nuts, soy, and other components in the product. So, keep in mind that you didn’t sneeze because the chocolate was in bad shape. You did because of the ingredients used in making the chocolate itself. You could also be allergic to just one or more components.
So that’s it about why people sneeze after eating chocolate, or after eating, or drinking desserts that contain chocolate. However, I will like you to read further to figure out more useful information about this topic.
The History Of Chocolate
Like many other treats, chocolate has a rich history. Its production didn’t start today. But you can claim the numerous varieties we have in the market aren’t that ancient.
Surprisingly, the chocolate we consume today has been in existence for over 2,000 years. The Aztecs, according to history, were the first people to enjoy chocolate. They drank the product as a beverage, which isn’t different from how most of us are consuming it today.
Now, what’s chocolate like to average American? It’s a must-have and a regular treat in their shopping list. Every year report has it that the average American consumes approximately 11.7 lb of this treat. Now you can see why chocolate-making businesses are flourishing across the country and the world over.
Also, we can’t talk about chocolate without mentioning its main ingredient. That ingredient is cacao seed. Without it, there will be no chocolate. According to the history of chocolate, the cultivation of cacao seed dates back to 250 and 900 A.D., in ancient Mesoamerica.
During this period, cacao seeds were cultivated (grown and harvested) massively. After harvesting, the seeds were also fermented and crushed to form a paste. The paste form of cacao seeds was widely consumed and highly cherished by the Mayans. And to paint the picture of how vital chocolate has been in the olden days, it was used as a unique form of currency and in trade, the same way we use money today.
The Ingredients In Chocolate
In the beginning, remember I said any ingredient in chocolate could make one sneeze. It could be the cocoa powder or other constituents in the product. I would also like you to know that besides sneezing, individuals sensitive or allergic to the components of chocolate can also exhibit different symptoms. More on this as we progress on this post!
Now back to the ingredients of chocolate. But before we progress, understand that we have the dark, white, and milk chocolate. These are the popular types of chocolates you will find in grocery stores around.
Here is the list of ingredients for chocolates:
The white, dark, and milk chocolates contain the following components; cocoa butter, sugar, full milk powder, vanilla, lecithin, cocoa liquor, and cocoa.
Again, here’s a notable difference between the three types of chocolates I mentioned.
The dark chocolate is as its name implies. It is darker in color and doesn’t have much of the ingredients I mentioned above. In other words, it comes packed with the least amount of components. It also contains an enormous amount of fiber compared to the rest.
Next is the milk chocolate. This type of chocolate is different from the dark and white chocolate in that it contains the smallest quantity of cocoa liquor. It contains fiber but less than the amount present in dark chocolate.
Finally, there’s white chocolate. This type of chocolate contains the highest amount of flavorings. However, this type of chocolate doesn’t contain any single fiber.
So, these are the ingredients and ways you can differentiate one chocolate from the other.
What Are The Benefits One Derives From Eating Chocolate?
Chocolate contains numerous constituents. These ingredients are also the factors responsible for the allergic reactions, sensitivity, and benefits one gets from consuming chocolate. For instance, the three types of chocolates (dark, white, and milk) contain potassium, sodium, riboflavin, and even vitamin E.
Before we continue with our discussions on chocolate sensitivity and allergy, let’s take a look at some of the benefits one can derive from eating chocolate. By and large, if you don’t sneeze or in any way react after consuming chocolate, the following benefits should make your love for chocolate to increase.
Helps your workout
If you enjoy working out routinely, which everyone should obviously, then chocolate should be one of the items on your shopping list. It comes packed with epicatechin, an incredible flavanol with enormous benefits. Take ½ of one square of any of the three chocolates (dark preferably), at least once daily. It will make you fitter and stronger. But then, be careful not to consume too much. Otherwise, you might not receive all the benefits you are supposed to get.
Lowers blood pressure
High blood pressure is becoming a prevalent health problem across the globe. If you’re in doubt, then check the report from the World Health Organization. It states that 1 in every 3 adults in the United States have HBP. However, dark chocolate can help uniquely. Research indicates that consuming an appropriate quantity of Nitric Oxide (NO) can help relax the arteries in one’s body. And you know what happens to blood pressure when the arteries are relaxed, right? Now guess what, the dark chocolate’s flavanols help in making this great Nitric Oxide that does the magic.
Addresses pregnancy complication
If your wife is pregnant, that’s all the more reason you shouldn’t deprive her of chocolates. As you may have read or been told, pregnancy complications can arise from many factors. One of such is preeclampsia. In this case, the blood pressure shoots up, and that could be bad for the mother and the baby. But research has identified that dark chocolate can be beneficial for this condition. It contains theobromine, a chemical that can stimulate one’s heart and cause the arteries to dilate.
Could be beneficial for people with diabetes
This should be the biggest scam of any news! I know that’s what is running through your mind. How come chocolate, as sweet as it is, can help diabetic? Won’t it worsen their condition? The answer is no! A study at an Italian university has discovered the enormous benefits chocolate can have on people with diabetes, thanks to its flavonoids. These chemicals not only enhance the metabolism of the body. They also help to improve insulin function. But don’t get over-excited just yet because more work is required to draw a more robust conclusion.
Could be beneficial for your cough
Coughing hard and loud during a board meeting or class can be embarrassing. People around you might develop an impression that you are unwell. But don’t you worry, there’s a report that chocolate can help without leaving you with nasty side effects as caffeine does. And the reason chocolate can help is because of the chemical theobromine. This chemical helps to calm coughs, irrespective of how difficult they are.
Chocolate Sensitivity VS Allergy: Things You Need To Know
Before we proceed, know that there’s a difference between being sensitive and allergic to chocolate.
Let’s assume you’re allergic to the treat and consume it. What might happen? It may spur your body’s immune system to release certain chemicals into the bloodstream. And an example of such substances is histamine.
The truth about these chemicals is that they could affect specific areas of your body and lead to grave discomfort. It could affect your nose, eyes, throat, skin, digestive system, or even lungs.
Furthermore, besides sneezing after eating chocolate or coming in contact with it, other symptoms you could experience are;
- Stomach cramp
- Swelling of tongue, lips or throat
- Shortness of breath or inability to breathe
Let’s talk about chocolate sensitivity. People with chocolate sensitivity might be able to consume a meager amount of the treat. They can do so without developing any unfavorable condition. However, if you take it in higher quantities, a reaction in one’s G.I. tract or other parts of the body could be triggered.
So, if you are sensitive to chocolate, then you might experience the following symptoms:
- Upset stomach
- Skin rash
Why do I sneeze when I eat chocolate is the question. However, you can revisit the answer at the beginning of this post. The thing is chocolate contains other ingredients besides the cocoa powder. So, you may be allergic or sensitive to any of the ingredients in the chocolate. Have that in mind. Chocolate can also be beneficial for your general health and wellbeing. Therefore, if you are not allergic or sensitive to it, then you should consider having a bite once in a while.