Mmm… chocolate

It's Valentine's Day so why not indulge myself with my favourite food ;-)

Chocolate is the only ingredient that is its very own food group.

Well not really – but it seems as if it should be. Powerfully comforting, creamy, delicious – many people eat chocolate at least several times a week.

Which begs the question…

Is Chocolate Good for You?

The answer is both yes and no.

Chocolate has been used for centuries to treat bronchitis, sexual malaise, fatigue, hangovers, anaemia, depression, memory loss, high blood pressure, poor eyesight, and more. It also helps release that feel-good neurotransmitter – serotonin – in the brain.

But eat the wrong kind and you’ll get loads of sugar, calories, and junky ingredients.

How to Eat it Responsibly

Chocolate begins life as raw cacao (pronounced kah-kow) beans. Loaded with antioxidants, minerals, vitamins, and plant phenols, cacao is a powerful superfood. The more processed cacao becomes, however – think commercially produced chocolate bars – the fewer healthy components remain.

So how to get the most out of your chocolate fix?

·       Don’t be afraid of the dark. The darker the chocolate, the more beneficial cacao it contains.

·       Know your percentages: the number on dark chocolate packaging refers to the percentage of cacao bean in chocolate. For maximum health benefit, look for dark chocolate that has 75% to 85% cacao. My current favourite is Vivani 92%

Give it time

One of the things I love most about chocolate is to let it work its magic. The melting temperature of chocolate is the temperature of your mouth.... a match mad in heaven!

So instead of crunching through - allow a moment of absolute peace and let that chocolate just melt in your mouth.