Getting to the Bottom of the Craving: Facts and Myths About Chocolate
no secret that people love chocolate. Once known as
the Mesoamerican cultures that cultivated cocoa for millennia to drink, this
alluring natural food has since become a global phenomenon.
Today, chocolate enthusiasts and casual consumers everywhere can't get enough
of this sweet treat in its many forms. There are, however, some misconceptions
floating around about the properties that make chocolate so special.
People struggling with weight gain, blood sugar levels and other problems often
assume that they have to give up chocolate entirely. This is usually not
actually the case. Here are a few essential facts that could further your
understanding of the role chocolate plays in a healthy lifestyle.
Chocolate comes from a plant known as
the cocoa tree, or
Theobroma cacao. This tropical evergreen
produces numerous seeds, commonly referred to as beans, which humans process to
make various chocolate products.
Minerals like copper, magnesium,
iron and manganese, which contribute to healthy circulatory, nervous,
connective and bone tissue;
Antioxidants like polyphenols that
may help reduce damage caused by free radicals and oxidative stress; and
Caffeine and theobromine,
stimulants that can relax muscles and fight fatigue in limited quantities.
Different forms of chocolate are also
known for containing vitamins A, C, D and E in varying amounts. It's important
to remember that additives have significant impacts on the nutritional value of
chocolate products. For instance, the milk byproducts added to some
store-bought chocolate candies introduce protein and calcium, but they can also
contribute unnecessary fat and cholesterol. A number of conventional recipes
also add unhealthy quantities of refined sugars that come with empty calories. This
is something you don’t have to worry about when you eat ChocoPerfection’s
sugar-free chocolate bars.
Myth #2: Eating Chocolate Contributes to Unhealthy Cholesterol
and Weight Gain
The seeds and fruits of many cultivated
plant species contain oils. These oils are comprised of chemicals that include
fatty acids like palmitic, oleic and stearic acids.
Some research suggests that the stearic acid which makes up a significant part
of chocolate's fat content doesn't actually induce weight gain. One
2006 study promotes
that chocolate consumption could
even contribute to improved heart health. Researchers think stearic acid may
have a neutral or insignificant impact on cholesterol and that the flavonoids
in chocolate actually offer some defense against coronary heart disease.
The way manufacturers process their chocolate affects how many of the health
advantages you enjoy. Some beneficial compounds, like flavonols that fight free
break down during
heat treatment and similar processing
. It's definitely
worth investigating your favorite producer's secret recipe.
We should point out here that because
of the high prebiotic fiber content in chicory root (the all-natural sweetener
used in ChocoPerfection chocolate), eating ChocoPerfection will actually
stimulate the growth of beneficial bacteria in the colon and decrease your
hunger levels while also satisfying your sweet tooth.
Myth #3: Chocolate Is Bad for Your Teeth
Eating natural chocolate doesn't
increase the risk that you'll develop cavities. Such problems generally arise
when you consume chocolates that are packed with added sugars or starchy fillers.
Because these substances are largely absent from unmodified cocoa, however,
chocolate lovers who are careful about what they buy have a lot more leeway. In
other words, stick to dark, sugar-free products with a transparent, traceable
Myth #4: Chocolate
Increases Your Blood Sugar
Although most chocolate will increase
blood sugar levels due to the high levels of sugar in each bite,
ChocoPerfection breaks this trend with its sugar-free chicory root alternative,
which won’t affect blood sugar levels at all. Diabetics rejoice!
Putting Science and Nature to Work
There are two alternatives to enjoying
regular, sugary chocolate: indulge in the natural stuff with no sweeteners
added (for a very bitter taste) or find products that are sweetened with
naturally derived alternatives.
With a host of
plant-based, non-sugar options
rebaudiana and mogrosides from monk fruits, it's entirely possible to be a
chocoholic without adverse health effects or massive guilt. Chocolates
containing sweeteners like chicory root, for instance, are great for those who
want a piece of their favorite flavors without the adverse health effects.
Even if you suffer from health issues or are seeking the ultimate toned
physique, there's no reason you can't enjoy the pleasure of chocolate. You just
have to make sure you’re informed of your options – and make the best choices for