Today we're talking all things chocolate and have all the weird and wonderful facts that you most likely didn't know. Read on for seven fun facts about chocolate.
When we talk about chocolate money, the first thing that comes to mind is those giant gold coins that we often get given as a child. But no, right now, we're talking about chocolate as an actual currency. Crazy right? It is said that the ancient Mayans would exchange chocolate for goods and services as the cacao bean became highly popular back then. Can you imagine making a purchase with a Kit Kat or Twix bar? It would certainly be interesting!
Did you know that chocolate milk was invented in Jamaica during the 1700s? According to the Natural History Museum, an Irish Botanist spent time in Jamaica and regularly was given cocoa to drink from the locals. As he found it quite sickening to drink, he added milk to make it more enjoyable and eventually bought the concoction back to England to be sold as medicine.
Research shows that the smell of chocolate has relaxing and calming effects on the brain. A study by Essex University found that people were able to pay more attention and retain more information when the smell of chocolate was around.
Is Chocolate a Vegetable? Never!
As you may know, milk and dark chocolate come from the cacao bean, grown on cacao trees. This has led many to believe that chocolate is a vegetable. Are you convinced? If we are classing chocolate as a healthy part of our diet, we are certainly not complaining!
M&M's and The Military
Did you know that in the 1940s, M&M's were introduced to soldiers as a snack during the Spanish Civil War? It is said that the hard shell prevented melting, which was ideal in the summer when the sales of chocolate had dropped. Not only are M&M's tasty, but they are the perfect handy snack too!
The Origin of Nutella
History says that an Italian pastry maker came up with the concept of Nutella for the first time by mixing hazelnuts with chocolate. This was to extend his chocolate rations following shortages during World War 2. We can't imagine a world without Nutella! Could you?
The Biggest Chocolate Seller in the World!
Can you guess where the most chocolate is sold in the world? Brussels Airport is known to sell more than 800 tonnes of chocolate per year! Within the airport lies The Belgian Chocolate House that features top Belgian chocolate brands and is the ambassador of the Praline (Belgium's most renowned chocolate).
Now that's a lot of chocolate!