There’s probably no person in this world who doesn’t love chocolate. Every home has at least one chocoholic, who is ready to give up everything for that delectable bite, irrespective of the widely believed health issues associated with chocolates. Keeping taste aside, here are some interesting chocolate facts that you probably never knew.
1. Mayan connection
Credit the Mayans for discovering cocoa beans. Cocoa trees bear fruits twice a year. Every tree grows around 10 pods that have around 42 beans. Each cocoa tree, if grown in the right climatic condition and with proper care, can bear fruits for nearly 100 years. You need 270 cocoa beans to make 1kg of chocolate. The Mayans of course never knew how to make chocolate. They used the beans for trading.
2. The Aztecs
The name “chocolate” is derived from “xocolati”, the Aztec word which means “bitter water”. The Aztecs mainly used coco as a beverage with a combination of achiote, chilli pepper, and cornmeal. According to some legends, a type of hallucinogenic mushroom was added to the drink, perhaps to forge a state of consciousness, so that they were able to communicate with their gods.
Some recent studies have indicated that chocolate has two types of flavonoids. These are procyanidins and flavonols and are good for the heart and help to prevent cancer. But since the flavonoid content is not much, it gives you a greater incentive to have more of your favourite chocolate. Some researchers claim that only dark chocolate can moderately boost antioxidants in your body, besides reducing your blood pressure. But don’t mess your chocolate with milk since that’ll drown the beneficial effects.