A new study hails chocolate as a super food because of the high levels of health-boosting antioxidants it contains.
A recent study at Imperial College, London, showed chocolate can suppress persistent coughing. Another compound, phenylethylamine, is thought to have a mood-boosting effect, reported dailymail.co.uk.
Meanwhile, antioxidants in chocolate are said to protect the skin against Ultra Violet damage. They also boost cardio-vascular health. Some doctors are now even recommending it as a form of treatment.
K.K. Atsina, formerly of the University of Ghana Medical School, has used cocoa powder as an adjunct to treatment of hypertension and diabetes.
Another Ghanaian doctor, F. Kwaku Addai, recommends two to five cups a day to help protect against malaria.
Patients of Dan Reinstein, a top laser eye surgeon at Harley Street's London Vision Clinic, are encouraged ot consume lot of chocolate 30 minutes before surgery.
"Patients who eat chocolate prior to laser surgery are less jittery, more alert and more co-operative than those who receive sedatives," he said.
Chocolate can also be used to balance low concentrations of brain chemicals, such as serotonin and dopamine.
These important chemicals are both involved in mood regulation, food intake and compulsive behaviours. Eating a moderate intake of dark chocolate is also suggested by psychiatrists because of its antidepressant-like effect.