Which parts of these paragraphs show you the student writer's voice and which parts show you the indirect external voice or the direct external voice of other authors? Click on the text to find out.
Another possible positive influence of chocolate is upon cardiovascular health.
Chocolate, processed accordingly, can be a provider of significant quantities of heart-friendly flavanols
(Hannum, Schmitz, & Keen, 2002)
which help in delaying blood clotting and reducing inflammation
(Schramm et al., 2001).
Such attributes of flavanols in chocolate need to be considered in the context of chocolate's other components
approximately 30% fat, 61% carbohydrate, 6% protein and 3% liquid and minerals
(Hannum, Schmitz, & Keen, 2002).
The key to maximising the benefits of flavanols in chocolate appears to lie in the level of fats present. Cocoa, which is simply chocolate minus the fat, is the most obvious candidate for maximising heart health,
Hannum, Schmitz and Keen (2002, p.107)
most cocoa products are made through an alkali process
"which destroys a high percentage of the flavanols".
Optimal maximisation of the flavanols involves such compounds being present in cocoa and chocolate products at levels where they are biologically active
(Ariefdjohan & Savaiano, 2005).
The biological makeup of chocolate is also relevant in determining whether chocolate is better viewed as a food or a drug, but the boundaries between indulgence and addictive behaviour are unclear.
Chocolate contains some biologically active elements including methylxanthines, and cannabinoid-like unsaturated fatty acids
(Bruinsma & Taren, 1999)
which, as Bruinsma and Taren say (1999), could represent a neurochemical dependency potential for chocolate, yet are present in exceedingly small amounts.
Interestingly, and linked to chocolate and mood,
Macdiarmid and Hetherington (1995)
their study found that
"self-identified chocolate 'addicts'"
reported a negative correlation between chocolate consumption and mood.
This is perhaps indicative of addictive or compulsive type behaviour. However, as
Bruinsma and Taren (1999)
eating chocolate can represent a sensory reward based, luxurious indulgence, based around texture, aroma and flavour anticipation, rather than a neurochemically induced craving.
Yet, it has been argued that chocolate is sometimes used as a form of self-medication, particularly in relation to magnesium deficiency.
A study by Pennington
(2000, as cited in Steinberg, Bearden, & Keen, 2003)
women do not generally meet US guidelines for trace elements, including magnesium.
This correlates with earlier studies by
Abraham and Lubran (1981),
a high correlation between magnesium deficiency and nervous tension in women.
Thus, tension-related chocolate cravings could be a biological entity fuelled by magnesium deficiency. Overall, however, it would appear that the proportion of people using chocolate as a drug rather than a food based sensory indulgence is small, though further research might prove enlightening.
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