If you’re partial to a square or two of an evening or if you’re looking for ways to sleep more soundly at night, we have some good news to share about the effects of chocolate on our sleep quality.
The good news…
As it turns out, the secret to a blissful night’s slumber could very well be the scent of chocolate. Research has shown that a certain type of brain activity associated with alertness, known as theta, drops significantly when we smell chocolate, resulting in a more relaxed state of mind that could help us feel more ready for bed (New Scientist).
As well as a slumber-inducing scent, most chocolate bars are made from chocolate mixed with milk solids. Drinking milk has long been a go-to home remedy for troublesome sleep, with a glass of warm milk before bed being recommended for children and adults alike. While some may dismiss this as an old wives’ tale, there is some truth to it. Milk contains tryptophan, which helps your body produce serotonin and melatonin — the sleepy hormones (Healthline).
Chocolate also contains a few vitamins and minerals that can help regulate our sleep, such as calcium, magnesium, and theobromine. Consuming cocoa also reduces stress and anxiety (Psychology Today), both of which can keep us awake at night, so enjoying a cup, a bar, or a few squares before bed is sure to help you relax.