How Chocolate Is The Answer To Cure Your Lack Of Motivation

Wednesday, March 04, 2015


Sounds crazy, right?

Is this the answer to all your cocoa cravings? Well yes, you now have an excuse to treat yourself to a slab of chocolate now and again, without the added guilt.

We all know comfort eating makes us happy, and if chocolate is your go-to comfort food then there's a good reason behind it. So next time you feel guilty about eating some of the brown heavenly stuff don't be too hard on yourself, well unless you've eaten a bit too much.

Here's the science behind it...

As well as tasting delicious (as we all know), chocolate is actually, believe it or not, scientifically proven to stimulate dopamine levels in your brain. And what is dopamine you may ask? Well dopamine is a neurotransmitter that has stimulating effects on the brain, playing the part in increasing pleasure, cognition - and motivation.

So those who are motivated at silly o' clock in the morning to go for a run, or those who try to live life to the fullest, tend to have much higher levels of this motivational molecule whilst us, the less motivated of the bunch, have less and technically do need chocolate in order to function (I knew I wasn't going crazy).

Here is some of the magic that goes on behind closed doors when a slab of Cadbury's enters your mouth (other chocolate brands are available):

  1. Your serotonin levels increase, meaning your body sends out signals to calm you down (and that's why you reach for Galaxy Cookie Crumble everytime you get your heart broken).
  2. Chocolate also increases the levels of phenylethlamine, a neurotransmitter that produces stimulation, in your body making you feel more motivated (as well as fat, guilty and a bit sluggish).
  3. It also triggers a release of this wonder that is dopamine, elevating your heart rate and increasing your motivation even more.
  4. Chocolate also results in a mild anti-depressent effect - so chocolate actually makes you happy! Your brain responds by promoting blissful emotions, lifting your mood and reducing worry and stress.
  5. White chocolate is proven to increase your serotonin and phenylethylamine levels even more intensely.
How cool is that?!

So if you're feeling sad, unmotivated or craving something naughty, treat yourself to a dosage of dopamine by eating a bit of chocolate. Becareful not to go too crazy, an extra large bar of Cadbury Fruit & Nut may seem like a good idea at the time but after a few pieces it's best to stop and embrace the side effects rather than consuming the whole bar in one sitting - like I've never done that ha.

As always, it's good to maintain a healthy and balance diet so a little bit here and there is recommended. 

Not a big choco-o-holic? You can also find dopamine inhancers in foods such as:
  • Almonds
  • Avocado
  • Bananas
  • Seeds (pumpkin and sesame are the best)

If you've come to the end of this post without drool dripping out of the sides of your mouth than congratulations, if not, don't worry you're not alone...

So next time you need that extra push to head down the gym or start off revision, give yourself a few pieces of your favourite chocolate, smile and get on with it :)

Thank you for reading!

Bethany 

XXX

To contact me, or for business related enquiries, please feel free to contact me at bethany@bethanyemerton.com



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