Germs Make You Crave Chocolate

At least that’s what some researchers who work for Nestle are saying. Here’s a quote from a recent news article:

A small study links the type of bacteria living in people’s digestive system to a desire for chocolate. Everyone has a vast community of microbes in their guts. But people who crave daily chocolate show signs of having different colonies of bacteria than people who are immune to chocolate’s allure.

That may be the case for other foods, too. The idea could eventually lead to treating some types of obesity by changing the composition of the trillions of bacteria occupying the intestines and stomach, said Sunil Kochhar, co-author of the study.

The article goes on to mention that they hope the research will lead to ways to help control obesity by controlling intestinal microbes. Oh, and, of course, make Nestle money selling chocolate that makes you lose weight.

The study does seem very small, only 22 men participated in it. From what I recall from my statistics classes their study would be smaller than an acceptable minimum sample size unless they had defined a very small population size as part of their criteria. Plus it would be skewed by only including men of a particular age and health status. We see studies like this all the time where there is some dramatic conclusion only to find later that things really don’t work that way.

What do you think? Just hype or something meaningful? I think headline grabbing hype myself.


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Comment by Cect 168 Phones
2008-07-11 02:51:50

TV makes me crave chocolate, boredom makes me crave chocolate, being happy makes me crave chocolate, being sad makes me crave chocolate, chocolate makes me crave chocolate … why should germs miss out?

Yep, germs make me crave chocolate too.

2008-08-08 01:18:45

I agree that the sample size was way too small to give this study any statistical authority. Headline-grabbing rubbish is what that was for sure.

2008-08-12 19:27:29

Chocolate is one of the great pleasures of life and nobody should be denied their chocolate, regardless if germs are involved or not! If a company can make a chocolate bar that helps you lose weight, that company will become quite rich. But I don’t think this is possible.

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