The act of nurturing friends and family with sentimental, nostalgic, or simply tasty food during times of illness, grief, and celebration is a long-standing tradition. Hence, the familiar term “comfort food.” Critical care nurses work amidst illness and grief on a daily basis. Indeed, comforting nurses or being attentive to “caregiver stress” is one of the current foci of exemplary professional practice, as set forth by the American Nurses Credentialing Center.

The field of proteomics, albeit a simplified description, is the study of proteins as they vary with time or stress periods (biological perturbations such as disease or drug therapy) that are experienced by a cell.3,4  Proteomic research suggests that consumption of dark chocolate is associated with stress-reducing benefits. Nutrition experts speculate that “acute doses” of specific chocolate types may have cardioprotective effects in humans, and psychology...

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