General Question

girlofscience's avatar

What the hell is with women and chocolate?

Asked by girlofscience (7567points) August 24th, 2008

Women with these crazy chocolate fetishes really creep me out. The ones who would die for chocolate around their periods. I’ve never understood this. I like chocolate as much as the next guy, but I’ve definitely never gotten all kinds of horny for it.

You know what else creeps me out about women? Breastfeeding. I know there are 8,000 different supposed benefits to it, but it’s just something that I think is totally freaking weird. I was never breastfed, and if I ever have a child, he/she will not be breastfed. It just seems like something that’s really outdated and unnecessary now. There are plenty of great formula brands now that are perfectly nutritious. No man wants to grow up and know that he used to suck on his mom’s boob. Like, seriously. That is not a thought any responsible mother should want to subject her child to. (I know most of the world disagrees with me on this.)

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34 Answers

Lovelocke's avatar

Issues. Are you registered to vote?

girlofscience's avatar

@Lovelocke: I’m sorry? Of course I am registered to vote.

anthony81212's avatar

“Substances found in chocolate, such as phenylethylamine, theobromine, anandamide and tryptophan trigger mood enhancing chemicals and neurotransmitters to be released in the brain. Phenylethylamine is a chemical found in the body that is similar to amphetamine. It helps mediate feelings of giddiness, attraction, euphoria and excitement. Researchers believe phenylethylamine causes the brain to release mesolimbic dopamine in the pleasure centers of the brain, which peaks during an orgasm. This may be why women report to prefer chocolate to sex.”
More info can be found here, here, and here

nayeight's avatar

My mother told me that breastfeeding is important because the baby recieves immunities that the mother has through the milk. What’s so wrong with breastfeeding? It’s completely natural. That’s like saying we should get rid of sex because now we know how to inpregnate women without conception.

SuperMouse's avatar

I love chocolate, especially during PMS, but do not consider it better than sex by any stretch of the imagination.

I breast fed all three of my boys and so far they haven’t shown any ill effects. I have been 100% upfront and honest with them about the horrors I subjected them to by feeding them the way nature intended instead of feeding them milk from some other animal. Maybe someday they will hate me for it, I suppose they can just put it on the list of things their inner child needs to work through on the therapist’s couch. If I had it to do all over again, I would do it the exact same way, but maybe I would wait longer to wean them.

nayeight's avatar

And I like chocolate. I wouldn’t kill for it but given the right circumstance I’m sure I could get aroused from eating it.

girlofscience's avatar

@anthony: Interesting. I had never really looked into the research related to women and chocolate. I actually thought it was more myth-based than that. It’s interesting that chocolate doesn’t have that effect on me… And I certainly don’t prefer it to sex.

@nayeight: You said: “That’s like saying we should get rid of sex because now we know how to inpregnate women without conception.” I disagree. There is nothing weird about two adults who love each other participating in a sexual act. I think it is different to subject a child to his mother’s breast when he doesn’t know any better.

nayeight's avatar

Well it’s the natural way of feeding your kid. There’s a reason why the milk comes. It’s not weird, it’s the way things are. If I have a baby and my breasts fill up with milk, please believe my kid will be fed with it. I never thought it was weird and don’t understand why you would? And why weren’t you breastfed? I think that’s weird. I think it’s weird for babies to drink forumula. Breastfeeding is not a sexual act, in fact I’ve heard it can hurt. I think it’s beautiful and when I see a mother breastfeeding, it makes me smile.

SuperMouse's avatar

@girlofscience, “subject a child to his mother’s breast,” that is one of the most interesting statements I have ever read here on Fluther. I say “almost” because the whole frizzer post is right up there. There is no way, by any stretch of the imagination that I would ever describe breastfeeding my sons as “subjecting” them to my breast. Mammary glands are there to produce milk. Mother’s milk has been proven time and again to be the best for babies.

If you are insinuating that boys would be uncomfortable knowing they were breast fed because of the sexual connotations that the breast carries, I can assure you that there is absolutely nothing sexual about breast feeding, for mother or baby.

anthony81212's avatar

Honesty, I’ve never heard of this subject beyond here. No-one ever talks about breastfeeding, it just seems like the normal thing in a cycle of life.

jlm11f's avatar

@supermouse – can you link to the frizzer post? i think i missed out on that one (and have noticed people referencing to it in other threads)

stratman37's avatar

Here’s a little-known fact that should turn most ladies off to chocolate: the average chocolate bar contains 18 insect legs!

SuperMouse's avatar

@PnL, without further ado, here is Fluther’s World Famous Frizzer Post.

glitterrrrfish's avatar

Eating chocolate is biochemically the same thing as having sex

augustlan's avatar

Breastfeeding is the most natural thing in the world. I nursed my children moments after they were born, and felt as if the whole pregnancy/birth cycle was complete at that point. There are benefits both for the baby and the mother, that can not be duplicated by formula. That said, I would never look down on another’s choice to bottle feed, but at least make an informed decision on the matter.

jlm11f's avatar

@supermouse – hahahahhah thank you for that

Trance24's avatar

Ok well I remember being told that when women are on their periods they crave chocolate because, it contains a chemical (something of that sort) that our body loses during that time. So our body naturally wants it. I am not positive of the validness of this statement, so if anyone wants to correct me Im up for it.

cak's avatar

@PnL…how could you miss the frizzer post! :)

@girlofscience – “subjected” I will say breastfeeding didn’t work for me. I tried, with both children. Especially for the first few days. I didn’t produce enough milk, so I couldn’t do breast feed. Regardless of the issues, it was important to try – sure, there is formula, but natural is better. Formula is not natural – yes, it’s better than it used to be; however, the “natural” parts of it (like natural, if you read the fine print) are still synthetic. To me, it’s extremely important that my children have the least amount of preservatives as possible.

Breast are there for a reason. Not to fill out a bra, to feed and nourish a baby. What could be more natural than that…formula…filled with synthetic hormones? There is nothing sexual…not at all!!!

If you have children and you decide not to try – that’s your choice; however, have fun with that first week…yeeeeeeeeeeeeouch!

jlm11f's avatar

@cak – i have no idea how i missed it. it’s not like i don’t fluther enough ;). frankly, i think i saw it on the main page when it was first asked, but ignored it because i figured it would be a waste of time. in short, i didn’t understand the genius it was when i first saw it

cak's avatar

frizzer is an all purpose word!

gailcalled's avatar

Two separate issues here, girl. You asked about women and chocolate and then segued into breast feeding as being akin to slipping infants arsenic.

Harp's avatar

Over my decades of working with chocolate, I’ve consumed ungodly quantities of it, and I’ve never understood what the whole neurotransmitter hype is about. I notice absolutely zero neurological effect from eating chocolate.

I doubt it’s a question of sensitivity because I’m quite sensitive to caffeine, a chemical cousine of theobromine. I’m convinced that the effect is psychological.

gailcalled's avatar

Harp: If you are a man, perhaps the call of the wild is different for you. Food sensitivities are different from the cyclical hormone swings that accompany a menstrual period (or a pregancy when we have both food cravings and loathing).

ninjaxmarc's avatar

chocolate a delicacy sometimes described better than sex. The taste for some is pure extacy.

The breast feeding should have been asked in a totally different question.

delirium's avatar

I wouldn’t really go as far as to kill for chocolate, but chocolate AND sex would be pretty worthy of homicide.

I, too, missed the excellent frizzer question. I am giggling like a malicious schoolgirl.

marinelife's avatar

Chocolate’s chemical effects are well documented.

“One of the more unique neurotransmitters released by chocolate is phenylethylamine. This so called “chocolate amphetamine” causes changes in blood pressure and blood-sugar levels leading to feelings of excitement and alertness (1). It works like amphetamines to increase mood and decrease depression, but it does not result in the same tolerance or addiction (3). Phenylethylamine is also called the “love drug” because it causes your pulse rate to quicken, resulting in a similar feeling to when someone is in love (4).

Another interesting compound found in chocolate is the lipid anandamide. Anandamide is unique due to its resemblance to THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), a chemical found in marijuana. Both activate the same receptor which causes the production of dopamine, a neurotransmitter which leads to feelings of well being that people associate with a high. Anandamide, found naturally in the brain, breaks down very rapidly. Besides adding to the levels of anandamide, chocolate also contains two other chemicals which work to slow the breakdown of the anandamide, thus extending the feelings of well-being (4). Even though the anandamide in chocolate helps to create feelings of elation, the effect is not the same as the THC in marijuana. THC reacts with receptors more widely dispersed in the brain and is present in much larger amounts. It would take twenty-five pounds of chocolate to achieve a similar high to that of marijuana (1).

Theobromine is another chemical found in chocolate that can affect the nervous system. Besides having properties that can lead to mental and physical relaxation, it also acts as a stimulant similar to caffeine. It can increase alertness as well as cause headaches. There is much debate as to whether or not caffeine even exists in chocolate. Some scientists believe that it is the less potent theobromine which is solely responsible for the caffeine-like effects (5).”

Each person’s reactions to the different chemicals in our food is different. Turkey and LTryptophan, for example. The level of impact of caffeine on different people.

As to breast feeding, the reason for doing it is to pass along the mother’s immunities to disease to the infant. No formula can do that.

It also:

* Help premature infants develop properly.
* Contains the perfect nutrients for baby.
*Breastfed babies score slightly higher on IQ tests.

gailcalled's avatar

Chocolate, sex and breast feeding…now that would be frizzer.

babygalll's avatar

Did someone say chocolate??

Knotmyday's avatar

I love chocolate, but I don’t crave it as some do. I do, however, crave good coffee, secure in the knowledge that many others do not.

I find the knowledge that my mother breastfed me no more or less strange than the knowledge that my cat breastfed her kittens. ‘Tis the natural order of things.

If the purpose of this qustion was truly in pursuit of information and not a public declaration of personal neurosis, I hope it has been answered satisfactorily.

MissAnthrope's avatar

^^^ Word.

I’ve never been a huge fan of chocolate, preferring other sweets over it. That is, except when I’m premenstrual.. then, I sometimes get real cravings for chocolate and other really junky foods.

As for breastfeeding.. um.. GoS, I find your view to be rather odd, particularly ironic coming from someone with the username ‘Girl of Science’. It’s a 100% natural function of the human body, as others have mentioned, a mother’s milk passes on needed antibodies and there is a correlation of slightly higher IQ in breastfed infants. In addition to that, it increases bonding between mother and infant. All mammals do it, I don’t understand what’s so disgusting? I mean, if you drink cow’s milk, you’re essentially breast-feeding from a cow and I’d think that’d be more distasteful than feeding one’s infant.

Lastly, I’d watch giving kids formula if you can help it. Take a look at the ingredients, it’s kind of sick. Some of them have corn syrup, the majority are synthetic (i.e. chemicals). I’d rather my baby have something wholesome and naturally nutritious.

Seesul's avatar

Mothers of preemies produce milk suited especially for their babies that helps not only the baby’s health, but their survival.

samaurikitten's avatar

I don’t understand it…. I dislike chocolate and always have…Everyone thinks I’m crazy ;D I like white chocolate though…which has very little actual cocoa in it.

WillWorkForChocolate's avatar

OMG. Chocolate. Do you have any? Share?

lamedb's avatar

I never crave chocolate because I am on my period.
When I was a vegetarian, I craved it constantly. Now that I have gone back to eating meat-all kinds too-I don’t crave it. I know other vegetarians have made the same observation, and I think it is because it is rich and satisfying, and somewhat filling, usually because I usually ate the types that had other ingredients too…

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