The Bittersweet Of Chocolate
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Think twice before to give chocolate on Valentine’s Day

Sure on Valentine’s Day lots of you will send your loved ones different kinds of gift as a symbol of love, a reminder that they’re someone special in your life. One of the most popular gifts among them all is Chocolate, either in a box, a chocolate bar, heart shape chocolate, dark chocolate, white chocolate, you can name them all. The fact is over $1 billion worth of chocolate is purchased for Valentine’s Day only in the U.S. itself. But before we go further on this and get crazy on buying those “sweet” little gifts to those people you care about, I want you guys to know some of the bittersweet facts about chocolate. So here we go!

The Bitter: Chocolate contains high amounts of calories, fat and sugar.

High Calorie – Chocolate is energy dense, meaning that just a small amount provides a high number of calories. An ounce of dark chocolate contains 170 calories, and an ounce of milk chocolate contains 153 calories. An ounce is just slightly more than 2 tablespoons of chocolate chips. Consuming too many high calorie foods can lead to obesity. While you still can burn calories through exercise, doing it so with chocolate would be time-consuming.

High Fat – Besides the high calorie containing, chocolate is not only high in total fat, but also high in unhealthy saturated fat. Each ounce serving of chocolate contains 7 grams of saturated fat. Saturated fat can increase your levels of “bad” LDL cholesterol. Moreover, excessive saturated fat consumption could increase your risk for diabetes and heart disease.

High Sugar – The rich flavor you got from chocolate comes not only from the fat it contains, but also from the high sugar content. Although sugar can provide energy, it’s not providing any other benefits. Dark chocolate contains a lot of sugar, but still way less than milk chocolate. Each ounce of dark chocolate contains 6.8 grams of sugar, and an ounce of milk chocolate provides 14.7 grams. Sugar can promote tooth decay, and a diet high in sugar may increase your risk of heart disease. Click here for more facts about sugar.

The Sweet: Chocolate mostly known as a mood booster, because it is naturally stimulate a chemical reason in the areas of our brain called anandamide, a neurotransmitter that produced in the brain, which could temporarily blocks feelings of pain and depression, and somehow will make you happier in a way! Besides that happy fact, chocolate actually contains quite a number of other beneficial ingredients. Two of them, named Antioxidants and Flavanols, prove chocolate as one of the super food that brings great benefits for our health.

Antioxidants – Experts believed antioxidants could help free your body from free radicals that are formed by our normal bodily processes, such as breathing and environmental contaminants, which cause oxidative damage to cells. Free radicals are implicated in the aging process and sometimes may even causes cancer, so consuming antioxidant rich foods like dark chocolate can protect you from many types of cancer and prevent you from premature aging.

Flavanols – Research shows that flavanols have potential influences on vascular health, such as lowering blood pressure, protects against blood inflammation and clotting, improving blood flow to the brain and heart. In addition it is also can reduce the risk of diabetes by helping your cells to function normally and regain the ability to use your body’s insulin efficiently. Flavanol also good for your skin health, it helps to protect against sunburns, improve blood flow to the skin and increase skin density and hydration.

These plant chemicals aren’t only found in chocolate. In fact, a wide variety of foods and beverages are rich in flavonols. These include cranberries, apples, peanuts, onions, tea and red wine.

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In conclusion, eating chocolate occasionally in small amounts, in this case a maximum of one bar chocolate per week is considered an appropriate amount, will help you maximize the benefits of eating chocolate while minimizing the risks. And before you bought that chocolate on the market make sure you know how to choose and understand what kind of chocolate to buy. You definitely want your loved ones to be healthier and have a longer life right?! So do pay attention on this. Know there are two types of chocolate:

  • Chocolate “candy”, which is bad because of the fillers and high amount of sugar that is added. It has been processed so the chocolate itself has lost its own natural good nutrients.
  • Raw organic chocolate, which is really good, mostly found in high quality dark chocolate that contained more than 70% pure cocoa. It should have not been alkalized, dried or cool-pressed rather than roasted, should use cane instead of refined sugar, milk fats or hydrogenated oils.

The sweeter the taste, the bitter benefits you’ll get. The bitter the taste, the sweeter benefits you’ll have. Choose wisely. Happy Valentine’s Day y’all!

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