Chocolate Makes Happy Babies Posted on 09 Mar 09:19 , 0 comments
Does eating dark chocolate during pregnancy create a happy baby? Maybe!
Scientists in Finland questioned 300 women during pregnancy before and after birth. The women were asked to rate their stress levels and the amount of chocolate they ate. The same women were then questioned six months later about their baby's behavior. The moms who ate chocolate during pregnancy reported that their babies laughed and smiled much more, and also had higher activity levels, than the babies of moms who didn't eat chocolate during pregnancy.
They also rated stress levels in babies who were born to stressed moms. They found that the stressed moms who ate dark chocolate during pregnancy had babies that were less fearful than stressed moms who did not consume dark chocolate during pregnancy.
The scientists believe that the happy baby outcome was due to the chemicals (specifically, phenylethylamine) found in dark chocolate that increase seratonin and dopamine levels. Others are skeptical saying that it may have been solely due to mom's satisfaction after eating dark chocolate. Nonetheless, the babies of chocolate-eating mamas were happier.
Expecting moms, as long as it's organic and dark (not milk) chocolate and limited portions, feel free to indulge in your 1-1.5 ounces during pregnancy. Not only will you be happier but perhaps you're make your baby happy as well.
Journal reference: Early Human Development (vol 76, p 139)