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Theobromine is the active ingredient of the cacao plant, which is found in chocolate, the tea plant, guarana berry, yerba mate, yaupon holly and the kola nut.
The earliest evidence of theobromine comsumption arose from an ancient Mayan pot dated to 600BC. Chocolate was consumed as a bitter drink named xocolatl, and cocoa beans were often used as currency in the pre Columbian Mesoamerican era. The Spaniards introduced Xocolatl to Europe, the West Indies and the Philippines, which became a popular brew by the 1700’s.
Theobromine has several potential medical uses, but is most commonly used in combination therapy to treat high blood pressure.