My relationship with Chocolate


Aspen Bishop

I love chocolate. It’s my favorite flavor of ice cream and cake, both of which I don’t really like unless it is chocolate flavored. Sadly though, I have developed an allergy to chocolate, or rather an intolerance.

My whole life I have eaten chocolate, and loved it. The problem really started when I was around nine and on vacation. Whenever I eat chocolate ice cream and went on a car ride after, I got sick.

Now, I don’t think it was car sickness as 1. I don’t get motion sick really and 2. The second time, I had eaten the ice cream and then went to sleep in a hotel, I got sick the next morning on an hour drive to the airport. There was around 8 hours in between the car ride and the drive.

Another reason it wasn’t car sickness was that years later the same thing would happen if I had just walked 1/4 of a mile back to my house from the local Ice Cream Shoppe. I just figured that I should only eat chocolate ice cream if I could lay down afterwards. I didn’t really make the connection of an allergy until later.

When I was 16 years old (I’m 17 now) I was talking to my friends about our favorite candy flavors. I said “Yeah, I like chocolate, but it burns your throat when you eat it.” They all looked at me and said “No, no it doesn’t. Are you allergic to chocolate?”

I hadn’t ever thought of that. Was I? I went home later and asked my family if chocolate burned their throats. The consensus then was “No.” I was confused. I had been raised believing that everyone’s throats burned when they eat chocolate. To me it was so normal, that no one talked about it.¬† If they did, it would be like “Rain makes you wet” something so obvious and known, there was no point in talking about it.

I had no idea that I was the odd one out

Then I moved and suddenly my reactions to chocolate started getting worse, it seemed that whenever I eat more than one fun size candy bar, I would get nauseous. The more I eat, the sicker I got. It took until November of this year, when I got extremely sick after eating my sister’s chocolate birthday cake that my parents were like “No more for you, you can only have a little bit on special occasions”

I love chocolate, and it seemed like all of the sudden I couldn’t eat it. Why now? Why do I have to give it up after I grew to love it?

The more I thought about it, the more I realized that this had been happening all of my life. Not with all chocolate, (though to be fair it’s not even all chocolate now) but I would get sick when eating really rich, chocolatey foods like brownies or good Hot Chocolate.

It isn’t a new thing, but it seems that with my age, my sensitivity to chocolate grows. I can still eat Nutella and Oreos without getting sick, but how much longer until those are taken away?

I see so many people eating chocolate and serving chocolate dishes and I just want to eat it with them. Sometimes I still do. I can’t give it up entirely.

The jury is still out on whether I am actually allergic to chocolate, or if I am actually just allergic to a commonly used additive, or something used during the refinery process. But for now I ‘try’ to avoid all chocolate, just in case. (Except¬† for Oreos and Nutella, still not allergic to those!)

So, all in all, it kind of sucks to be allergic to chocolate. Especially because I have been eating it my whole life and I know what it tastes like. I just want to go back to the happy days of being able to eat what I want, whenever I wanted. I want to drink hot chocolate when it gets cold and eat brownies and cake with others. Sadly, I cannot.

In the meantime I tend to prefer vanilla or caramel flavored things, at least, until we can find out a solution that allows me to eat chocolate again. For now thought, Caramel is my favorite flavor.