Suffering from a winter cold or persistent cough? Studies suggest that chocolate may be more effective at soothing a cough than natural remedies such as honey and lemon as well as more effective than the widely used drug codeine. Cough experts note that a compound found in cocoa is responsible for the cough-suppressing abilities of the sweet treat and is more effective at treating both acute and chronic coughs in patients.
The Daily Mail reports that cough sufferers should forgo the medicine aisle and head straight for the candy aisle for the most effective treatment available. Professor Alyn Morice, the head of the cardiovascular and respiratory studies at the University of Hull, says that chocolate is your best bet for soothing a cough. Morice has spent a lot of time studying cough remedies as a founding member of the International Society for the Study of Cough. The cough expert says that the largest ever worldwide study of over-the-counter cough remedies shows that products containing chocolate are the most effective.
BEST NEWS The Best Cure for a Cough May Actually Be Chocolate https://t.co/MKd8N98Ycf via
— Elizabeth Denton (@Elizabethann1) January 8, 2016
The chocolate-based medicines outperformed their non-chocolate counterparts and were able to clear up a cough in as little as two days. Morice notes that the study will not be published for another 12 months, but says that the results were promising for chocolate lovers. The study is being referred to as NOCOCO and is just one of many that outline the cough-suppressing benefits of cocoa.
According to the Medical Daily, a study from 2012 performed by the National Heart and Lung Institute in the United Kingdom showed that chocolate was more effective at treating a cough than the widely used drug codeine. The study involved 300 different participants from 13 different public hospitals in the United Kingdom. The researchers discovered that 60 percent of the patients given the chocolate compound theobromine experienced cough relief.
— Evan Kirstel (@evankirstel) January 7, 2016
The researchers concluded that eating one bar of dark chocolate a day could provide enough theobromine to offer cough relief to sufferers.
“Eating a bar of dark chocolate a day which has high levels of the compound may also be effective for people with diagnosed persistent cough, although eating chocolate on a daily basis may have other unwanted effects, including weight gain and so on.”
Though the 2012 United Kingdom study touted the benefits of the chemical properties in chocolate, the latest research focuses more on the liquid form of chocolate being thicker and more coating in the throat than a thinner cough syrup. The NOCOCO study was performed solely on chocolate-based medicines versus honey or lemon based counterparts. Morice notes that the thickness of the chocolate may better coat the throat causing more lasting cough suppression.
“This simply means it is stickier and more viscose than standard cough medicines, so it forms a coating which protects nerve endings in the throat which trigger the urge to cough.”
#Chocolate is apparently the best cure for a cough… It’s not like we needed an excuse anyway!????????
— WilkinsonSword Women (@WS_Women) January 7, 2016
Morice notes that simply drinking hot cocoa won’t be enough to suppress your cough. She says that sucking on a chocolate bar would provide more relief than the hot cocoa but says that a chocolate-based medicine with diphenhydramine, levomenthol and ammonium chloride is most effective. Therefore, it seems that chocolate lovers have a reason to look for the tasty chocolate-based medicines when hitting the stores for an over-the-counter cough remedy.
What do you think about the idea that chocolate could be the best cough treatment available?
[Photo by Sean Gallup/ Getty Images]