Theobromine (Theo-Bro-Mean), originally named Xantheose is an interesting alkaloid which comes from the cocoa plant, yummm. It’s greek name means ‘Food for the Gods’ and this definitely makes sense because chocolate is so delicious!. It is also found in yerba mate, gotu kola, and guarana berry.
Theobromine, caffeines chemical cousin is a stimulant, a diuretic (increases urination), and a bronchodilator (opens the airways). It assists in open up the airways of the lungs and is used in asthma medications (inhalers) as it helps ease asthma and hyperventilation symptoms. As a stimulant, it is ten times weaker than caffeine but it does affect the central nervous system in a positive way.
Theobromine is very controversial as it may affect people in different ways, some feel very hyper and others feel very lethargic after its consumption. It is also being studied on its effects on the heart as results have shown that it helps enlarge the blood vessels and assists with high blood pressure.
There is so many unsolved mysteries to the chemistry of chocolate but Theobromine is definitely a major player and we know that it has a great impact on our cardiovascular system and overall health.