Monday, May 03, 2010

Chocolate and Depression

May 3, 2010

Institute For Medical Wellness Healthy Living Report

First things first.

Did everyone enjoy their peek at summer weather?

I hope it put a smile on everyone's face, especially after our brutal winter.

If it did not, maybe you need a mood enhancer?

How bout some chocolate ?

Chocolate and Depression


I am back to chocolate yet again.

I wrote a previous post about chocolate that can be found here.

The definition of a chocoholic is: a person who loves/is addicted to chocolate.

I really have a taste for chocolate, but I am not convinced that I meet enough criteria to be labeled a "chocoholic".

You see, there are many days that I turn down a Hershey's kiss.

But today is not looking good! And tomorrow is not looking much better ; )

Oh well!!

Now let's look at the study.

First they screened 1018 individuals for depression. Of these, 694 were men, and 314 were women.

First question: How did they get twice as many men as women for a chocolate study???

The study allowed 931 of the 1018 into the study, as these individuals were not presently on any antidepressant medication. These 931 subjects tracked their chocolate consumption as well as being tested for mood using a depression screening scale.

The study results were as follows.

There were three patterns which were grouped according to the depression scales.

The individuals who scored high on the depression scales consumed 55% more chocolate than those not positive for depression.

Even more interesting was that the individuals who scored the highest on the depression scales consumed over twice the amount of chocolate as those who scored not positive for depression.

There was no statistical difference between men and women.

These results can be viewed a few different ways.

1) Since depressed individuals eat more chocolate, maybe the chocolate is causing the depression.

I sure hope this is not the case, as I do not want to give up my chocolate ; )

2) Depressed individuals self medicate by eating chocolate, as chocolate is high in polyphenols which can raise serotonin levels in the brain. The prescription drug Prozac also works by raising brain serotonin levels. Here is a link to more information on why chocolate may help with mood.

I can see the slogan now.

"Feeling down or depressed? Eat a Hershey's Kiss. It's natures Prozac !"

I guess that could be good or bad for Hershey's chocolate sales???

And the third reason,

Drum roll please ...................

3) Some people just enjoy the taste of chocolate!!!

Being in the medical field, my personal theory agrees with both #2 and #3. I am a firm believer that you are what you eat. I also believe that we have subconscious cravings for different foods dependent upon their nutritional value. This is very evident in the diets of pregnant women, but occurs in everyone, just to different degrees. In that vein, here is a link to the top ten scientific reasons why chocolate is the world's perfect food, and why you may also crave chocolate.


Don't tell Jessica, my medical assistant, that I ratted her out, but I think she is a chocoholic !!!!
So if you want to get on her good side, you know, to get that script called in quickly, or to get a copy of your recent test mailed to you, chocolate goes a long way ; )

Institute For Medical Wellness New Offers:

I came across a very interesting blog article. The article discussed how our gut flora, the billions of bacteria that live in our digestive tract, get out of balance. This can occur with natural aging, as well as a result of our lifestyle choices which include diets, stress, and use of prescription medications, among others. I will not go further into this theory here, other than to say that to slow down aging, I agree with the blog author that we need to decrease inflammation in our body. As lifestyle accommodations can take years of trial and error to perfect, I like to focus on supplements that help our bodies immune system to properly control inflammation.


My supplement of the month offer for May 2010, includes two supplements that help with decreasing inflammation and maintaining proper gut flora.

For May 2010,

Vitamin D3- Liquid 2000iu per drop, 900 drops per bottle- regularly $20


Probiotic Pearls- ProFlora Immune- 30 pearls, regularly $20.

Purchase these two supplements together for $30, a 25% savings.

This offer can be used with other Institute For Medical Wellness supplement discount offers!!


Don't forget that a massage makes a wonderful Mother's Day Gift.

For more information on our massage services please click here.

And now for an important announcement.

I have added an Announcement page to our website.

This page will include recent and new happenings concerning the Institute For Medical Wellness, including new programs and special offers, which sometimes may be good discounts. So please check out the Announcement page every so often.
Other Institute For Medical Wellness Programs and Events:

1) Healthy Heart Program
2) Healthy Weight Program- Lite Edition
3) Traditional Wellness Plan

4) I am pleased to announce that the Institute For Medical Wellness is a Silver Sponsor of Moorestown Day 2010.

Please look for our booth on Main Street in Moorestown on Saturday June 5, 2010, between 9AM-3PM.

I hope to see you there, and please wish for good weather, that is, no rain!

It is no fun being outside in the rain!!

To Good Health!
Steven Horvitz, D.O,
Board Certified Family Practice
Founder of The Institute For Medical Wellness
128 Borton Landing Road, Suite Two
Moorestown, NJ 08057
Phone 856-231-0590
Fax 856-294-0311

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