Myths About Chocolate You Can Stop Believing

Americans eat nearly three billion pounds of chocolate per year (via The Chocolate Store). It's not hard to believe when you consider how delicious chocolate is, and how many recipes utilize it, from sweets to coffees to cereals. Over the years, chocolate has sometimes gotten a bad rap, with doctors telling us it will make us gain weight, teenagers blaming chocolate for their acne (that one may actually be true, according to CNN), and some people blaming chocolate for high caffeine consumption. Let's put some of these common myths to rest.

While anything eaten with abandon can cause you to gain weight, chocolate, when eaten in moderation, is no worse than any other food, according to Treehugger. What about a chocolate bar that has a white coating? Did you think that it went bad and tossed it away? Turns out that sugar and fat do something called "bloom" when there's surface moisture due to temperature changes. Next time, melt that puppy down and it will be as good as new.

Chocolate does not contain excess amounts of caffeine or increase romance

We're not suggesting that you replace apples and oranges with chocolate bars, but if you've given up your weekly chocolate treat because you were told it had too much caffeine, you'll want to keep reading. According to Treehugger, the average Hershey's chocolate bar has nine milligrams of caffeine, while a Hershey's Special Dark bar has 20 milligrams. That's hardly a reason to ditch the chocolate, when compared to 330 milligrams of caffeine found in a Starbuck's grande coffee.

As for chocolate being an aphrodisiac, experts point to our own wishful thinking, according to Futurity. While the aphrodisiac myth has proven helpful in selling quite a lot of Valentine's Day chocolate (58 million pounds leading up to Valentine's Day, according to The Daily Meal), it ends there, for the most part. Psychologists have stated that there's little to no evidence to suggest that chocolate has any bearing on humans becoming more romantic. So, when it comes to chocolate, eat it because you enjoy it, and, as with anything, enjoy it in moderation.