A recent post on curing chocolate cravings with a brisk walk left one Sugar user a bit confused. So I wanted to clarify a few things about dark chocolate's new status as a health food. She asked:
But I thought dark chocolate was good for your health, so wouldn't you not want to reduce your craving at least for dark chocolate?
Let me just begin by stating my deep love for dark chocolate. I appreciate that it is satisfying in such small amounts because even though dark chocolate is high in flavonoid antioxidants, it is still a high-calorie food. Two to four small pieces of dark chocolate offer a similar amount of antioxidants as many fruits and veggies, but with more than double to triple the caloric load. Chocolate is also lacking many other benefits found in produce, like fiber, and it contains considerably more fat, especially saturated fat, than say broccoli or an apple.
To learn what happens to chocolate as it is processed,
While it is true that plain chocolate is high in antioxidants, these plant chemicals also impart the chocolate with a bitter taste and are often removed during the manufacturing process. With the flavonoids removed, chocolate is just a decadent treat. The majority of chocolatiers do not list the antioxidant content of their chocolate.
I believe in eating a bit of dark chocolate daily to satisfy my chocolate cravings. It is recommended that you eat just one ounce a day. And if those small tastes of chocolate, which I urge you to savor and even meditate on, don't satisfy, then you can always go for a brisk walk and see how you feel after your stroll.