Beclometasone preventer inhaler and eating chocolate


Daft question I know but does anyone know if eating chocolate while on a course of the preventer inhaler 'beclometasone' (one puff in the morning and one puff in the evening) and using my releif inhaler salbutamol when required have an effect on your body?

I love chocolate and have been ill for a couple of weeks with asthma but not quite sure if it reacts with the beclometasone and salbutamol or not?

many thanks


21 Replies

  • I have never heard of an interaction with chocolate, but I can bet half the members of this message board would be willing to join in a research project :)

  • I can testify that chocolate doesn't interact with any asthma medication as far as I know, though if you eat half a tonne of very dark 80% chocolate you may find that caffeine and theophyyline levels may be elevated.

    I may be just coincidental.

    Do you have any symptoms of oral thrush? sore itchy throat with white spots? If so, it could be the sugar in lower cocoa content chocolate such as milk chocolate that is causing the thrush. Sugar fuels the fungus!

    Also, you could be sensitive to chocolate or something in the chocolate that is triggering your asthma.

    Is your asthma bettter when you avoid chocolate?

    Hope this helps!


    PS Bex, I am a willing volunteer to eat chocolate to see at what level it would trigger my asthma!

  • I'll volunteer Bex!!!! :-) I have never ever experienced any affect of eating chocolate affecting my asthma meds and have been a chocoholic the entire time ive had asthma - well almost (twenty...something yrs!!!) Id be a guinee pig in any trial tho lol!!!! As for very very dark chocolate - which i love it doesnt make my theophyline levels do odd stuff or anything like that which is a good thing as once i start i cant stop till the whole bar has gone :-)

    Good luck!!!

    Lv Kat Xxx

  • Thank you so much Ladies! - I will just go and eat a box of chocolates now



  • I love dark chocolate, and it is also good for you, did you know that coco contains theophyline, which is used to treat asthma, Ok it's a small amount, but even better, more chocolate. It's also found in tiny amounts in coffee.

    Make sure it's the plain dark chocolate, not light or milk/white, thats full of rubbish.

  • For years, chocolate would have me coughing.

    Now on beclametasone, I don't cough any more. Yippee!

    Can always say the weight gain is down to the steroids. Ha ha.

    Enjoy your chocolate, kareng.

  • I think I need to myth bust here you would need eat stupid amounts of chocolate and the really dark 80% stuff for it to affect your theoplyline levels. Tea also contains theophyline I think Em H and once worked out that you would need somewhere around 600 cups for it to equal standard dose.

  • Hello from a medical type person.....

    Ok -i haven't posted much on here, particularly about medical stuff. I'm KSD, I'm a junior doctor, who's unable to work due to my brittle asthma and other medical problems at the moment. Please be nice! I don't do this often....;)

    Anyway, I'm afraid I'm going to have to put in my tuppence worth. I couldn't let these misconceptions about chocolate affecting lung function persist! If only they were true - given the amount of chocolate I eat, I doubt i'd ever need any asthma meds!

    This is some info for anyone who may be interested. It's a mix from my recall and my old med school biochemistry and pharmacology books!

    Caffeine, Theobromine and Theophylline are related chemicals. They are methylated xanthine derivatives, each with a slightly different chemical structure. These structures are:

    Caffeine - 1,3,7-trimethylxanthine

    Theophylline - 1,3-dimethylxanthine

    Theobromine -3,7-dimethylxanthine

    They all work by inhibiting Cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) phosphodiesterases, which prevent the enzyme from breaking gown the active cAMP to an inactive form.

    The effects of this include a relaxation of on smooth muscle such as the bronchioles as well as the tremor, restlessness and the increased heart rate and diuretic actions that some of us will no doubt have experienced if our theophylline levels are edging on the high side.

    and now to apply the science to reality....and put a few things in perspective.

    Coffee - contains caffeine

    Tea mainly contains theophylline respectively.

    Theobromine is found in cocoa products such as chocolate. It is also found in tea - but not coffee. There is little caffeine itself in cocoa products, it's the theobromine that has the 'stimulating' effect!

    Now, what you need to remember is that Theobromine is considerably weaker than theophylline (or caffeine) with an estimated 1/10th effect. There's apparently 184mg of theobromine in a small bar of the special dark hershey's chocolate (sorry - no british companies publish the data online that I can find). This is a tiny dose, especially when you consider the minimal 1/10th potency of theophylline!

    (As an aside....It's the theobromine in chocolate that makes it toxic to dogs [EDIT not docs, as i initially mistakenly put! Thanks for highlighting that one Ginny!], cats and horses. They are unable to metabolise the chemical in the same way / rate as humans - the levels build up, which is why it can be fatal to them)

    There's a table in my pharmacology book which rates each chemical on its effect on the central nervous system, bronchodilation and diuretic effects out of a max of 4. I don't know how to reproduce the table on the forum, but essentially it says that Caffeine is the most 'stimulating' having higher central nervous system effects 4/4 than theophylline 3/4 and theobromine 1/4. Theophylline is far more bronchodilating 4/4 than either caffeine 2/4 or theobromine 1/4.

    So, my humble advice would be to stick to your theophylline for good effect on your lungs, and if you want a 'pick me up' have coffee! The theobromine quantities in chocolate (even very dark, (tasty) chocolate) will have very little effect on you at all, on either your lung function or alertness, unless you are a four-legged canine - and then it's not advised anyway!!

    WIth regard to the potential effect on theophylline levels - I'm not sure if theobromine would be detected as a different chemical on routine testing, so may or may not theoretically contribute to a higher theophylline level in blood tests. However, as stated by Bex and I believe, previously EmH - it would be HIGHLY unlikely that a human would be able to eat enough chocolate for there to be any noticable effect on theophylline levels.

    Hope that clears a few things up... any questions, and i'll do my best.

    KSD (with a rather dusty, but still definitely medical hat on)

  • Blimey KSD I award you AUK superbrain of the night award. Bottom line as I read it is eat chocolate unless like me you can't eat the real stuff and have to have some weird ""free from"" replacement.

  • Yup Bex, you're right...

    My recommended recipe is:

    Chocolate for pleasure as it tastes good, Theophylline as prescribed for lung function, and Coffee for alertness...

    and I probably should get someone else to dust off my medical 'hat' - as it won't do my lungs any good.... lol

    KSD :)

  • KSD, wow, thats some medical text. I did say small amount, and was just trying to put a positive on eating chocolate, but then who cares, just eat the damn stuff, it tastes good.

  • That's a fantastic post KSD, but docs = dogs in the bracketed paragraph? Just wondering because I didn't know that chocolate was toxic to some animals, having owned a chocolate-eating cat during childhood who used to steal the odd bit of Dairy Milk (approx. 0.25g once every few months). Have just googled and surprisingly it is quite toxic. Dogs are more prone to eating chocolate than cats, wth dark being stronger in effect than milk, followed by white.

  • Doh! Ooppps. someone spotted my rather comical and sadly non-deliberate mistake! ;)

    *That's a fantastic post KSD, but docs = dogs in the bracketed paragraph?*

    Thanks Ginny, Yep, that was meant to be dogs! Maybe it is toxic to some docs too... but certainly not this doctor! ;)

    Woody-som, I agree with you entirely. Whilst not wanting to quash people's fun - I was just worried by the original post and a few others that there was some people who might seriously consider the use of choc to be therapeutic to their asthma health, or be concerned about potential effect on theophylline levels.

    I feel that there's enough myth around asthma, and it's just thought some clarification of this matter might be of use, particularly for those new to the boards or the disease. As my asthma became brittle - I remember people were always wanting to help, resulting in my being told all sorts of well meaning, but completely useless advice about things that would supposedly help or harm my asthma.

    I'd rather we all kept eating choc as normal for us... for pleasure..rather than there suddenly be people unnecessarily concerned that there is a further health issue to consider, over and above its calorific/sugar content!

    KSD x

  • Sorry KSD didn't mean to be pedantic :). Green and Blacks have published caffeine and theobromine content for some of their products online ... 40g of G&B Dark contains 6mg of caffeine and 48mg theobromine. So quite a massive amount of dark chocolate would be needed for an effect.

    So out of curiosity, if theobromine is 1/10 potency compared to theophylline, then 2500mg theobromine is equivalent to 250mg theophylline.

    2500/48 * 40 = 2083g = 2.083kg

    If my maths is right (it might be a bit rusty or I may have gone down the wrong track completely!) then 2.083kg of G&B Dark contains 2500mg theobromine. Don't think it's possible to eat twenty 100g bars at a time.

  • Ginny, I'd have a damn good go at eating 20 100g bars of chocolate, may take all day, but doesn't sound impossible, just may not feel quite as well as one would like.

    I have several 200grm bars here, well one less now, just ate the whole thing while reading my emails.

  • im with chris on that one yummy! :-) 20 bars of chocolate may be a tough challenge and make ya feel a little icky but its a challenge any self confessed chocoholic wouldnt mind contemplating lol!! :-) maybe a little help required tho haha! :-)

  • Thanks for looking that one up. 2kg? oooch. That's a LOT of chocolate! Particularly when we're talking about dark chocolate! yummmmm. ;)

    Definitely think would be feeling quite unwell by then though! Dark G&B choc - particularly maya gold, is the chocolate I buy when I want to be 'good' - I find it easier than most other chocolate to be restrained, to only eat a square or a two at a time- rather than scoffing the lot! I can only do that with really 'nice' chocolate. Dairy milk etc is a sure way of me ending up scoffing the lot!

    After my really rather traumatic couple of years health-wise -I was feeling like I needed to treat myself. I bought a digital SLR camera, which keeps me amused and has prompted me to start a OU course in digital photography but my real treat was a Hotel Chocolat tasting club subscription. Every 2 months I get a box of their rather yummy choc through the post! I've often completely forgotten when they're due - so is a really pleasant surprise to find it amongst the more boring bank statements and bills! :)

  • That sounds yummy KSD - a surprise chocolate package!!! mmmmm - where do i subscribe lol!!! Xxx

  • Try here for your chocolate heaven,

  • oooooh chris that most certainly is chocolate heaven...... *thinks about how much chocolate i could eat....*

    Thanx for the link chris! Take care Xx

  • definitely chocolate heaven! As it happens, I'm steadily devouring their latest tasting selection with a friend, whilst watching The Reader on DVD.

    that website can also be accessed at

    KSD :)

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