Can you get sick from eating too much chocolate?

In this article, we will answer the question “Can you get sick from eating too much chocolate?”, how much chocolate can you safely eat, and what are the dangers of eating too much chocolate.

Can you get sick from eating too much chocolate?

Yes, you can get sick from eating too much chocolate. Chocolate contains theobromine, an alkaloid, at the rate of 0.5–2.7%. The excess of theobromine can wreak havoc on your health.

The vasodilatory and diuretic effects of theobromine in excess can be fatal. Moreover, it messes with your gut, curbs your appetite, and causes a feeling of discomfort due to headaches, sweating, and an accelerated heart rate.

The increased heart rate accompanied by lowered blood pressure lay the foundation for sudden fatality. But the good news is that the lethal dose of theobromine is quite high. 

If you have ingested theobromine in its toxic dose, the uncomfortable symptoms of the toxicity won’t permit you to eat more chocolate, making it practically impossible to approach the lethal dose.

A 1,000mg dose of theobromine per kilogram of body weight is deemed toxic. In other words, you will have to eat 75000 mg of theobromine if you weigh 75 kg for it to be toxic. 

The theobromine content of milk chocolate averages around 2.4 mg/g, dark chocolate has approx. 5.5 mg of theobromine in every gram, whereas baker’s chocolate contains a whopping 16 mg theobromine per gram.

What are the other dangers of eating too much chocolate?

Weight gain 

Chocolate is laden with calories, and not just the milk varieties. Dark chocolate also has a high caloric value. This means dark chocolate is only healthy in small amounts. 

What makes sugar so unhealthy? Other than the high sugar content, chocolate contains a significant percentage of cocoa butter. Cocoa butter is composed of mostly saturated fats the dangers of which are known to the public. 

The unsaturated fats present in cocoa butter, such as oleic acid, or palmitic acid may be helpful in lowering blood cholesterol, but only when consumed in small amounts.

Diabetes 

Your blood sugar level drastically shoots up when you eat too much chocolate. This is a point of concern, especially for individuals with diabetes. Diabetes is a disease that can not be cured, it can only be managed through a controlled diet.

Therefore, eating a careless amount of chocolate can be fatal for a diabetes patient. In case you did now know, the higher the glycemic index score a particular food item has, the more dangerous it is for diabetics. 

A higher score means the sugars in that food item readily accumulate in the bloodstream, available to be used. 

Too much sugar in the bloodstream disturbs the demand and supply dynamics of energy and puts pressure on the heart and kidneys, which are already malfunctioning in the case of diabetics.

Hypertension 

Cocoa powder is packed with bioactive compounds. Country to theobromine that lowers your blood pressure, the phenylethylamine and caffeine increase your heart rate and may lead to hypertension.

Sickness from allergies 

If you are allergic to milk, nuts, or soy, chocolate is not for you unless the label clearly states the exclusion of such ingredients. Ingesting these allergic components in high concentrations leads to sickness that alters the taste of your mouth, and causes headaches and dizziness.

The allergic reaction may be severe if you are a sensitive individual. To avoid any unpleasant consequences, contact your doctor when the allergy symptoms start to appear.

High caffeine content 

The caffeine content of chocolate averages around 22 milligrams per 1 ounce. Caffeine, in controlled amounts, can serve many benefits. In excess, caffeine causes heartburn, increases blood pressure, impedes the absorption of calcium, and results in anxiety, arrhythmia, and addiction. 

How much chocolate can you safely eat?

A healthy individual should consume no more than 1 ounce of chocolate per day. The goal here is not to deem chocolate a bad or dangerous food for consumption. But to educate the masses about the harmful effects of overeating chocolate.

There are studies that prove that chocolate, when consumed in moderate amounts, can help improve your mood and support heart health. The flavanols in chocolate are being investigated for their anti-cancer properties.

That being said, you should be extra cautious about the food you eat if you have a chronic disease or are immunocompromised. 

Conclusion 

In this article, we answered the question “Can you get sick from eating too much chocolate?”, how much chocolate can you safely eat, and what are the dangers of eating too much chocolate.

References 

https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/biochemistry-genetics-and-molecular-biology/theobromine#:~:text=Theobromine%20is%20the%20primary%20bitter,theophylline%20as%20well%20as%20paraxanthine
https://www.livestrong.com/article/487778-can-eating-too-much-dark-chocolate-make-you-sick/
https://www.livestrong.com/article/411407-side-effects-of-eating-too-much-chocolate/

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