Is Chocolate Really Healthy?
Eating a chocolate bar as part of a ‘healthy’ breakfast or post-workout snack sounds too good to be true, right? It is. But here’s what you should know:
Chocolate contains healthy compounds – called flavanols – which have been shown to relax blood vessels and stimulate blood flow (more blood flow = more oxygen delivered = better health). Unfortunately, many chocolate candies are high in sugar and calories and low in these flavanols. This is because they are made from cocoa solids (the flavanol-rich portion of the cocoa bean), cocoa fat (which lacks flavanols completely), and other varying ingredients. Cocoa powder, however, is made by removing the fat of the cocoa bean and grinding down the remaining solids, leaving you with a relatively low-calorie and flavanol-rich product!
So, if you enjoy the chocolate flavor, try adding plain unsweetened cocoa powder to your low-fat milk (great for after a workout!), morning oatmeal, or try the recipe below as a quick dessert to add healthy flavanols without the extra calories!
Chocolate Yogurt Mousse
Makes: 1 serving
– 1⁄2 cup plain Greek-style low-fat yogurt
– 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa
– 1 tablespoon honey
– 1⁄4 cup fresh raspberries (or other fruit)
1. Combine yogurt, cocoa, and honey
in a small bowl. Mix well.
2. Top with fresh raspberries/fruit