About 500 years ago, the Aztecs received Columbus ceremoniously and sometimes presented him with a sack of the finest Kakao beans as a welcome gift. He tried the drink and politely declined. He was probably used to sweeter things.
Not until 17 years later did another important Spaniard dare to taste the sacred drink. Hernando Cortés was blown away, as he reported to the Spanish king. Probably out of this euphoria, he bloodthirstily destroyed the Aztec empire and sailed back home about 10 years later. In his luggage he carried a significant amount of Kakao to flatter the king and mix love potions.
With the announcement at the royal court, the addition of sugar and spices like vanilla began. The Spaniards kept the food of the gods to themselves for a century before, through an international marriage, they came out with the secret. And soon there were chocolate houses in the posh corners of Europe. The nobility knew how to sweeten their time.
When Daniel Peter and Henri Nestlé invented milk chocolate in 1875, the healing effect of Kakao was gone. What remained was an over-sweetened industrial product with strong addictive potential.