Why Does Chocolate Make Me Thirsty?

Are you starting to notice a pattern? Every time you enjoy a bar of your favorite chocolate, all of a sudden, you feel very thirsty. You rush to the tap, pour yourself a glass of water, then down it all in one. But let’s be honest, this isn’t ideal. In fact, maybe you’re wondering if there’s something wrong with you. Well, don’t worry because there’s not. It’s perfectly normal to feel thirsty after you’ve eaten some chocolate. But why exactly do we get thirsty, then? Today, we will answer these questions. So let’s get started.

So, why does chocolate make me thirsty? Chocolate makes you thirsty because it contains high levels of sugar, caffeine, and salt. When you consume high amounts of these ingredients, your body needs water to keep the concentration of them at safe levels. So your body uses up water and therefore needs more water to perform this task.

In other words, it is not chocolate making you feel thirsty. It’s a response by your body to ensure you’ll have enough water to process the chocolate!

Clever huh.

It really is, as we shall continue to see in the following sections.

Is It Normal To Feel Thirsty After Eating Chocolate?

It is normal to feel thirsty after eating chocolate; most people experience this. It is even more common if you consume chocolate in a pre-existing dehydrated state.

Humans get thirsty, just like other living things. But certain ingredients will make us thirstier than normal.

Chocolate bars are sugary. They can also contain salt and caffeine. But sugar is one of their predominant ingredients. 

Some chocolate bars can contain close to a whopping 48% sugar.

But why is sugar such a thirst generator? We’ve had a quick summary of the process earlier.

But let’s delve into the biological process a bit further.

When you eat chocolate, the sugar it contains is quickly absorbed into your digestive system and transported to your blood.

But your body is fully aware that it is only supposed to have a certain amount of sugar in its system. Clever body!

Whilst your blood circulates around your body, it will extract water from the surrounding cells.

It does this so that it can keep the concentration of sugar to the appropriate level your body requires.

But guess what? Your body’s cells aren’t the ocean! They don’t possess an abundant supply of water. 

So once your blood has depleted them of their water content, they now need a refill.

So, they let you know. And they let you know by sending messages to your brain that it’s time for that refill. 

How does your brain notify you of this? Well, not by a phone call. But by making you thirsty.

The brain is intelligent, after all. It knows that to replenish your body’s fluids, you need to drink water. 

So at any point where your sugar levels see a sudden spike, this process will occur.

And it will result in you feeling a desperate need to drink some water.

It’s the same with caffeine and salt. 

We eat a chocolate bar; we add caffeine and salt into our system.

It’s digested and absorbed into our blood. It circulates, extracting water from cells because the body knows it needs to keep its salt and caffeine levels at where they need to be. 

That’s why it uses more water, and that’s why sugar, salt, and caffeine make us thirsty!

Does Chocolate Dehydrate You?

Chocolate does dehydrate you. It requires water to process the sugar and salt/sodium content.

The process we just talked about will dehydrate you, but it’s not the only dehydrating process that occurs when you eat chocolate.

Let’s start by talking a bit more about how high sugar will cause dehydration, and then we’ll also talk about the role sodium plays as well.

High Sugar

We already know how sugar makes you thirsty.

But it also interacts with your kidneys to cause dehydration.

When you eat chocolate and sugar gets into your bloodstream, your kidneys will produce more urine so that your body can get rid of the sugar when you go for a pee.

But the process of creating more urine dehydrates you. So it will make you thirsty this way as well.

If you don’t get fluids into your system quickly, then you will become dehydrated.

High Sodium

Salt is sodium. When you eat chocolate with high salt content, something can occur called hedonic escalation.

This is a phenomenon that triggers your brain to crave more and more of whatever it’s just experienced.

Hedonic escalation is a problem because it overcomes hedonic adaptation. 

Hedonic adaptation is basically your body telling you you’re full. You’ve had enough, now is the time to stop eating.

But if hedonic escalation is occurring, then your body won’t stop wanting to eat. You’ll just eat more and more chocolate.

By consuming lots of salt/sodium, you then risk becoming dehydrated by the processes we have already discussed relating to your blood extracting water from the cells in your body.

Does Some Chocolate Dehydrate You More Than Others?

Chocolates that are highest in sugar, caffeine, and salt will dehydrate you the most. Dark chocolate is particularly bad for dehydration.

It makes sense. Chocolates that contain higher amounts of the ingredients that your blood that your body then has to balance out with water are going to cause dehydration. 

So chocolates that are low in sugar, caffeine, or salt won’t cause you to be dehydrated as much as those that possess high amounts of those ingredients.

Dark chocolate is often seen as healthier chocolate for several reasons, including its compatibility with the Keto Diet.

But dark chocolate is actually quite a big culprit when it comes to dehydration. 

This is because it contains lots of caffeine. Much more than milk chocolate and white chocolate. 

As we know, high levels of caffeine contribute to dehydration.

So it’s no wonder that high caffeine possessing dark chocolate can cause significant dehydration.

How To Remain Hydrated When Eating Chocolate

Your best option is to drink plenty of water. Of course, you could always choose chocolates that are lower in sugar, salt, and/or caffeine too.

The best way to quench thirst is to drink water.

You’re thirsty because your body needs water.

So give it what it wants, and it will stop telling you it’s thirsty, just like a crying baby that needs feeding.

Other drinks do possess some hydration value, including even alcohol.

Yet they’ll never be as effective in quenching thirst as your good old friend H2O.

You’ll get thirsty about 15 to 20 minutes after eating chocolate.

So plan your hydration around this time.

The best way to stop a thirst from surfacing in the first place is to choose what you eat wisely.

If you don’t want to be thirsty, then chocolate should be avoided.

Or at least those which contain high levels of sugar, salt, and caffeine.

You could also just limit the amount you consume.

Devouring seriously vast quantities of chocolate will lead to levels of thirst that seem like they can’t be quenched no matter how much water you drink.

Other Similar Foods That Can Make You Feel Thirsty

There are plenty of other foods and drinks out there that will make you thirsty. Some of these make you thirsty for the same reasons chocolate does. Others make you thirst for totally different reasons.

We don’t have time today to look at all the other foods that make you thirsty.

But we can at least take a look at some of the main culprits!

Candy

As you know, candy also contains high levels of sugar, like chocolate.

So it too can cause you to become really thirsty.

And yes, it’s for the same reason chocolate makes you thirsty.

Sodas

The drinkable candy.

So again, sodas make you thirsty just the same way chocolate and candy do.

Coffee

Caffeine makes you thirsty and dehydrated. It’s one of the ingredients in some chocolates that contributes to causing thirstiness.

So when you drink coffee, which contains caffeine, it too will make you thirsty.

Asparagus

Bet you weren’t expecting to see this one here. Well, get with it, Jimmy!

Asparagus makes you urinate more. So if your body is getting rid of fluids quickly, then it will make you want to keep drinking more to replenish those fluids!

High Protein Meals

Too much of anything is bad for you.

And too much protein will cause dehydration and thirstiness. 

Fried Food

You were probably expecting to see this on here. It’s a typical suspect of thirstiness and dehydration.

Fried foods contain lots and lots of salt. Which, as we know, will trigger that process where your blood extracts water from the surrounding cells.

Your cells then need replenishment, so you get thirsty!

Nuts & Other Salty Snacks

A no-brainer, really. Salt is the third ingredient that triggers that process that makes us thirsty.

So foods really high in salt, like nuts, will contribute to creating your thirst.

Finally

Chocolate is delicious. But thirst is one of the prices you pay to enjoy it. 

But don’t worry. It’s normal for you to feel thirsty after eating chocolate.

Just make sure you listen to your body and help it replenish itself by drinking plenty of H2O!

Noticed other reactions when eating chocolate? Then my other guides may be of help:

Leave a Comment