Intentional Chocolate: Fact or Hooey?

Clay Gordon
11/24/08 10:57:48AM
1,680 posts
What is intentional chocolate? It is chocolate that has been exposed to good thoughts in the belief that when you ingest the chocolate you also ingest the good thoughts, which improves your mood even more than plain chocolate can.Fact? Fiction? Well, here's a link to the abstract of a research study in a peer reviewed journal published by a reputable publisher of said journals that says that eating intentional chocolate makes people feel better than eating un intentional chocolate.What do you think?PS. As a side note, one of the authors cited in the study is Jim Walsh, the "mastermind" behind the chocolate scam known as Hawaiian Vintage Chocolate. Just hearing that he's associated makes me skeptical. Just wanted to let you know where my bias on this is. However, that said, I see that both Drs Michael Balik and Roberta Lee (both of whom I know and respect) are contributing editors to the journal. So there may be something to it.

clay -

updated by @clay: 04/20/15 06:17:51AM
Koa Kahili
11/30/08 11:51:32AM
7 posts
I just read a little article in "Inspiration" magazine on Kauai about this intentional chocolate, and it's definitely for the new age types. There was a fad of intentional water a while back, where there is some scientific observations that water does change with prayers/intentions. Just how water structure reflects our consciousness is a mystery. Masaru Emoto of Japan is most noted for his photographs and information on the subject. That being said, you can make the assumptions that all food and liquids, has the ability to be influenced by our intentions. With delicious chocolate, "love" is always a key ingredient. So is the placebo effect, if you think the chocolate was made by an enlightened monk, then it might just taste a little holier then thou. Hence the aspect of Kosher foods, they are blessed by a Rabbi, so it must be better for you. And if you believe they are, then they are. So what would be the difference between a spiritually blessed bar of Heresies, I mean Hershey's milk chocolate with melamine, and a plain old bar of Valrhona?What if the Dalai Lama blessed a Snickers, would it make a consumer happier? And what about Smarties (the Brit version of M+M'S)...does it make us more astute? Chocolate, like all food and medicine, is a further action needed.
12/01/08 08:21:23AM
38 posts
I know this is off topic a little, but just to let you know that Kosher food is not blessed by a Rabbi, kosher meat slaughter has a blessing on the act of performing the religious rite, but other foods are not blessed in order to become certified kosher, a rabbi or emissary of the rabbi will check the ingredients to ensure they do not contain prohibited foods. I can verify that the taste and way that kosher chocolate makes me feel (nothing special) -brought me to open my own chocolate factory!As a side note, I try to maintain a positive mental attitude while I process chocolate- but that may be the result of working with chocolate!
Eric Durtschi
12/01/08 10:33:46AM
38 posts
This is interesting. I think there might be something to it but like Koa said a lot of it is most likely placebo in my opinion. It has been proven time and time again that if a respected source tells you that a product should do a b and c then you are more likely to believe it and have a b and c happen. In the medical community a drug only has to be 5% more effective than the placebo to be considered "effective". In clinical trials, routinely, the people with the placebo treatment show the expected improvement.I also think that is why nobody's food tastes good as mom's or grandma's. There is more of a connection to that person so our minds tell us it is better. Curious to see other opinions.
James Cary
12/01/08 02:01:13PM
32 posts
I haven't done a quantitative analysis like this since college. So, I don't remember -- is the P value that they measured good? From the language it seems so, as it affirmed their hypothesis that the added intention 'ingredient' made a difference.The interesting thing is that this study is double blind -- the participants are not aware they are eating intentional chocolate. So that tosses out the whole placebo effect argument. The sample size seemed possibly a bit small. Other factors in their life (family / work life, exercise habits, etc) also make a big difference in terms of how one feels. The groups may not have been random enough.Also, I couldn't tell but are they using the same chocolate food ingredients? Or are they pairing the intentional chocolate to a Hershey's bar or something like that. Maybe the intentional chocolate has higher concentrations of chocolate's known psychoactive chemicals.I'm skeptical of the study, but I do believe in the placebo effect as others have mentioned. Stress can be reduced and thus a feeling of being healthier can be increased by allowing yourself to be more receptive to positive thoughts.
12/01/08 05:58:51PM
251 posts
Pure hooey.
12/03/08 06:24:59PM
3 posts
So intentional chocolate means that the chocolatier was thinking happy thoughts while producing the chocolates and the unintentional chocolate was made by a "cold" machine? I definetely agree that this idea leans more towards the new age, but if it works how are they going to control the chocaltiers thoughts? Play cartoons? Perhaps I am too skeptical or cynical, but if it really does work I've got Wallace and Gromit videos I'll donate for the cause.


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