Why Mamas Should Eat Chocolate

by | May 10, 2020 | Food

Chocolate the ultimate indulgence loved by mostly everyone! For too many years as been swung between best friend and mortal enemy. But I'll share with you how you can enjoy this delight guilt free...

Chocolate is considered to be the ultimate indulgence loved by almost everyone!

But for Mama’s is it your friend or enemy to be avoided?

I have you consider that this treat as it been often referred to, Could it be enjoyed guilt free?

Let’s first raise the usual objections, and stories that we’ve been told

‘Chocolate makes you fat’  —– ‘Chocolate is bad for you’ —— ‘Chocolate is a Naughty Treat’

Thank heavens we don’t believe this crap in our house otherwise I’d be up sh!t creek, cause I LOVE CHOCOLATE.

So what about this beliefs that we’ve been told.

Those beliefs, the ones we’ve had pounded into us whilst growing up! Created a love/hate relationship in me regarding the stuff for years!

It tasted so yummy and always made me feel delicious too, but then I felt guilty afterward and bad that I had ‘succumbed’ to temptation!

This went on for many years until I starting taking responsibility for knowing exactly what I should and shouldn’t eat,

And understood the effects of those foods on my body and health!

And what d’ya know

Well Woohoo!

I discovered that Chocolate is on the Green tick list!!!

When you eat the right chocolate, in the right amounts.

It actually becomes your friend and something you can responsibly eat totally guilt free!

Thank Goodness!

Now a very important thing to note is that I am not talking about the milky, sugary slightly brown stuff that is actually labelled ‘confectionery!’

There is actually not enough ‘chocolate’ (cocoa) in that stuff for it to be truly called chocolate, just ask the Belgians.

Plus there are way too many nasties in that stuff which means zero health benefits.

So don’t be thinking this is a ‘Free Pass’ to eat rubbish! Let’s not kid ourselves.

Instead please let this roll around in your mind for a bit, a new suggestion!

The Benefits of Chocolate (cacao)

Good quality Dark Chocolate (70% cacao or more) has a stack of health benefits that are drawn from its native ingredient the Cacao Bean. This is what makes it a great little ‘snack’ or ‘indulgence’

Here’s why;

  • Dark Chocolate stimulates the production of those happy ‘Endorphins’ – brain chemicals that lift your mood and make you feel great, while at the same time improving cognitive performance.
  • It is full of flavonoids – these are plant-based antioxidants which have numerous health-inducing benefits including antiviral, anti-inflammatory, anti-allergy and antioxidant.

That means the effects of eating a small amount of dark chocolate regularly may be many and varied. But it is widely noted that the flavonoids can have the following benefits on your body:

  1. Improved heart health (cardiovascular) Lower disease risk
  2. Lowers Blood pressure and improves blood flow
  3. Full of antioxidants which counter the damaging free radicals – molecules in our body that cause cell damage resulting in disease and body failure
  4. Can help your skin be more resistant to sunburn and UV effects
  5. Has heaps of nutrients in it such as Manganese, Copper, Magnesium, and Iron.
  6. Can improve insulin sensitivity which is vital for a healthy body that works as it should.

What Is Considered a Good Chocolate To Buy

So with all those benefits, you may be wondering where you can get some, right!

Most stores these days will stock a variety of brands which contain 70%, 85% and even 90% cocoa.

But as with everything there is chocolate…then there is chocolate!

Cheaper brands can often be full of fillers, chemicals and other stuff that you really don’t want to be eating.

So a good quality, sustainably made chocolate is your best bet.

My favourite brand is Alter Eco. So many delicious flavours and a good way to enjoy a ‘move over to the dark side’ if you are a dark chocolate newbie!

On that thought, the move to really enjoying dark chocolate is to just keep trying small amounts of the good stuff and in time your taste buds will change.

My Hubby was a die-hard ‘Milk-chocolate’ fan for years until he decided to really give the Dark stuff a go.

Now even 70% is ‘too sweet’ for him, and he’s the first to pick the inferior tastes, lecithin, in brands which lack purity.

Warning Chocolate It’s Still a Sugary Treat

Despite all the various benefits that the cacao bean brings to chocolate lets not forget there is still sugar in chocolate.

So I’m certainly not saying that chowing down on a bar a day is a going to be a good thing to do!!!

But if you learn to savour your chocolate, which is an experience in itself, a couple of squares a day {10-20 grams} is totally fine.

My kids can make half a square of chocolate last a very very long time!

Which for them can be a bit messy (ok extremely messy)

But they get the benefits of the chocolate, plus their brain registers the flavours and gives them the ‘feel good’ message that we all love when we eat it.

Dark Chocolate Tasting for Newbies

The transition from sweet choc confectionery to cacao rich chocolate can sometimes take a little bit of time.

But if you love chocolate and really want to learn how to enjoy life in love with this pure and dark cacao bean, then it’s simply about repetition.

You just need to keep on tasting small amounts of the dark chocolate mindfully regularly. Instead of mindlessly chowing down on sweet choc confectionery while doing something else, try something new and exciting.

Grab a couple of different styles of dark chocolate (70%) where the bean is grown in a different country.

Then every day, take one small square with your favourite cuppa, and slowly and mindfully taste and consume the chocolate.

This helps you to appreciate and enjoy the actual chocolate flavours and to move past the sugar flavours that milk chocolates have been hiding for ages.

Not only will this help you to move your tastes towards the dark chocolate flavours, it will also help you cement in your mind your favourite bean locations.

The beans taste very different from different countries.

One final thing.

Dark chocolate can be slightly higher priced than regular sugary stuff. Two comments:

It contains real cocoa with real benefits and real effort has gone into creating this flavours. Sugar, milk powders, fillers, chemicals and fake junk have no benefits and are just there to pad out the cheap stuff. PLUS

You will eat less dark chocolate. The flavours are more powerful, and when you eat it slower (more mindfully) your brain knows it’s had this wonderful little snack and tells you it’s had enough.

My Top Five

A discussion about chocolate wouldn’t be complete without a list of our favourite brands.

Here is a list of a few of my favourite Dark Chocolate Brands that I’ve had the pleasure of enjoying the last few years.

  1. Lindt 85% Cocoa, Extra Dark
  2. Green & Black’s Organic Dark 85% Cacao
  3. Alter Eco’s Dark Blackout 85%
  4. Wicked Dark 95% Stoneground Organic
  5. Blanxart Organic Dark Chocolate

Note: The last 2 I have not been able to try in Australia yet! But they come highly recommended by my fellow Primal Health Coaches! If you try them send me a message to let me know Your verdict!

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