It is very rare these days to get good news. But we may just have drudged some up, and the prospects are delicious. Because according to an expert, “Chocolate can calm coughs.”
Dr. Alyn Morice, a professor at the University of Hull and a founding member of the International Society for the Study of Cough, said he knew his assertion sounded like something out of Mary Poppins — just a spoonful of cocoa makes a cough subside. Nevertheless, it’s true. The viscosity and stickiness of cocoa means that it can coat our throats and subdue the urge to cough.
Morice explained this shocking revelation in the Daily Mail a few years ago. Why the idea did not transform medicine as we know it (what else could chocolate cure, and why aren’t pharmacies giving out over-the-counter Godiva now?), this writer will never know. But at least it justifies eating fistfuls of candy during a sick day (aka a work-from-home day). Or does it?
Technically, it depends on the kind of chocolate. Most of Morice’s observations are based on medications that incorporate cocoa, among other ingredients. One such medicine is Unicough.
Morice hypothesized that sucking on a piece of chocolate “may provide some relief, but I think it is the way the chocolate compounds work with other ingredients in the linctus which make it so effective.” Sadly, hot chocolate is not a suitable stand-in for chocolate-based medicine, either.
What it sounds like is, for science’s sake, we should all be testing whether eating entire bars of chocolate soothes our tired throats. It’s a good time to stumble upon this knowledge as well, as many of us are currently battling winter colds and flu. So instead of bringing cough drops to work, stop by the bodega and grab a Toblerone bar.
Then, we self-described medical experts can assess our own chocolate-infused data and see where we go from there (probably to the store for more chocolate).