Medically Reviewed by Suzanne Falck, MD on November 4, 2016— Written by Stephanie Watson
Chocolate is found in many popular desserts and even in some savory dishes. For some people, though, chocolate isn’t a sweet treat. Some people have a sensitivity or an allergy to chocolate or an ingredient in a chocolate-based food.
Do you think you might have a problem with chocolate? Here’s how to tell whether cocoa or chocolate-based foods should be on your “no eat” list.
Professor David Guest, from the University of Sydney's Department of Plant and Food Sciences, says a worldwide shortage of cocoa has been predicted by 2020.
Prof Guest says there are a number of reasons for the expected dearth.
"Firstly, about 70 per cent of our beans come from West Africa and West Africa's been experiencing a whole range of political and social upheaval over the past couple of decades," he says.
"In other countries like Indonesia there's a range of factors like the build up of pests and diseases and a whole range of crops farmers are growing that are more profitable than cocoa."
Prof Guest says farmers are moving into higher return crops such as coffee and maize that are less susceptible to pests and diseases.
If you’re looking for an awesome chocolate substitute, look no further than carob chips. Carob is naturally sweet, rich and delicious. It also contains vital nutrients but is completely free of caffeine, making it a great option for kids and anyone looking to keep their caffeine intake low or nonexistent.
The fruit of the carob tree is used to make medicinal and food products, such as carob chips. Carob is a tasty food, but it’s also used for a variety of health concerns, including high cholesterol, high blood sugar, diarrhea, vomiting, cough and even obesity. (1)What Is Carob?