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New CoCo Madness choclate supplement from Defense Nutrition

Cocoa powder may contain many health benefits.
Cocoa powder may contain many health benefits.
Photo by Tim Boyle/Getty Images

If you describe chocolate as a supplement, does that mean you get to eat more of it?

Defense Nutrition is known for its ChocoWhey products, a line based on cocoa and whey protein. More recently they introduced CoCo Madness, a cocoa-based vegan tablet which claims to have a “cognitive enhancing mood elevating effect,” give you a pre-workout boost, sustain long-lasting alertness and performance and enhance muscle recovery.

Defense Nutrition’s PR person sent me some samples to try. She suggested they’d be a good coffee alternative. For someone like me, who has a high caffeine tolerance, chocolate tablets aren’t going to replace my favorite energy and mood elevator. However, they are delicious with coffee. I suspect people who aren’t caffeine addicts would be likelier than I am to notice a change in energy from these chocolate supplements.

So what’s in them? Wait, maybe I need reading glasses after all. This is some tiny print on the label! Serving size is six tablets for a total of 20 calories. In that you get 4 g carbs, 1 g sugar and no protein or vitamins. Mostly these pills are made from cocoa powder, rice milk and flavors.

However, Defense Nutrition’s website mentions the benefits of ingredients which aren’t listed on standard labels. They claim that a substance in cocoa helps your body produce and metabolize nitric oxide, resulting in insulin sensitivity, health circulation, a better response to stress and increased sexual arousal. Flavonols in cocoa may help prevent arterial clogging and reduce the risk of blood clots and heart attacks. Substances in chocolate may also reduce anxiety, lower pain sensitivity, promote relaxation and generally make you feel better.

At press time, you could buy a bottle of 120 CoCo Madness pills for $14.95. Despite their low sugar content, they taste like candy. Try not to eat the whole bottle at once.

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