Is chocolate ever a good thing?
Thanks to a reader to asked about chocolate as stress relief I have written this post for you all.
Like many things in life moderation is the key to a healthy long term relationship with chocolate. It tastes wonderful and can improve even the worst day, so read on to find out how to treat yourself and be honestly kind to your body as well.
Coco beans contain Flavanols which are the main healthy component -so what will flavanols do?
ALL DETAILS ARE BASED ON LIMITED RESEARCH PUBLISHED ON THE INTERNET AND MORE RESEARCH ON CHOCOLATE IS NEED TO CONFIRM ANY HEALTH BENEFITS.
- “Flavanols in cocoa beans have antioxidant effects that reduce cell damage implicated in heart disease”
- Flavanols reduce blood pressure (generally accepted by medical profession)
- and again – Flavanols improve vascular function (blood flow)
- Reduce risk of heart attack
- Reduce risk of stroke
- Reduced risk of diabetes
- Improve cognitive function (research with forgetful elderly people)
- One study found regular chocolate eaters (5 days per week) had lower BMI than non or sporadic chocolate eaters
Beans in the Bar
The key component is in the coco bean which means that in order for chocolate to be a good thing you need alot of the bean in the bar. White and milk chocolate just do not make the grade, bean content must be 65% or higher – some say that the bean should be 80% to get enough of the good stuff.
How can you then force this healthy option into your diet? Ok I know this is hard so some suggestions are below…….
Suggested dosage of chocolate and how to take it
Dosage? Keep it small and again suggestions vary, a high 85% bean bar with one square a day is a good place to start.
Make your own hot chocolate from real coco powder and keep it strong – lots of sugar and milk are not helpful!
Sprinkle coco powder onto breakfast cereal – avoid sugar laden shop bought varieties
Stir some coco into coffee or add it to the cafetiere, forget shop sprinkles use the real stuff
Grate dark chocolate onto ice cream or yoghurt
Add your own comments for use of chocolate and remember – keep it DARK