Chocolates are indeed a treat for taste buds, but all the chocolates are not created equal.
While some of us have grown up eating milk chocolate but there is a healthier alternative in the market out there. While dark chocolates might taste quite bitter for the first time but they are packed with tons of nutritional values. Concerned about the bitter taste of dark chocolate? Starting with 50% dark chocolate is a great way to develop its unique taste. After a few experiences, you will start loving dark chocolates too.
How dark chocolate is different from milk chocolate?
Chocolate is extracted from the cacao plants. Cacao beans are collected, crushed, fermented and processed to get the cocoa powder.
The primary difference between the dark chocolate and the milk chocolate is the difference in their cocoa percentage.
While most of the milk chocolates contain about 10-25 percent of cocoa, dark chocolates contain cocoa ranging from 50% to 99%.
Cocoa has been proven to be beneficial in many different ways, its been found to improve brain function (1), reduces symptoms of depression (2), reduce stress levels, may reduce high blood pressure, boost up blood nitric levels (3), lower the risk of heart diseases (4), weight management (5), improved libido and sex drive. Overall, it’s a superfood that benefits your body in a multidimensional way.
So, because of the lower cocoa percentage milk chocolate contains a high percentage of filler food items that are not really healthy for the body and mind. Milk chocolates are made by combining a bit of cocoa powder and milk (milk powder or condensed milk). Milk chocolates were more popular because of their smoother, sweeter and creamier texture than dark chocolate.
But, dark chocolates are swiftly gearing up to be the top choice of fitness enthusiasts. Dark chocolates contain cocoa as its primary content which makes it a far more natural and healthier alternative to milk chocolates.
Do you know? Dark chocolate is known for its aphrodisiac qualities and Mayans considered chocolate as ‘food of the gods’,
We have discussed the benefits of cocoa but all the dark chocolates are not created equal. There are a few things that you need to look into the best dark chocolate.
You can buy dark chocolate because of its cocoa percentage. Obviously, a higher percentage of cocoa means a higher level of purity.
It can be hard for people to swallow dark chocolate above 90% cocoa, that’s why I suggest 70-80% of cocoa which makes it tasty and healthy at the same time.
It’s not just the cocoa that you need to look after, avoid the product that contains trans fat, milk, artificial flavorings, high amounts of sugar. Some of the manufacturers use a high amount of fats and sugar to provide texture to the chocolate but that makes it quite unhealthy.
Many companies treat dark chocolate with alkali to improve color and reduce its bitterness. But the alkalization significantly reduces the natural antioxidants of cocoa.
Organic or not
Choose organic chocolate to ensure purity. Choosing organic dark chocolate neutralizes the possibility of exposure to artificial chemicals, or pesticides sprayed on the coffee beans.
How much dark chocolate you eat before gaining weight?
Gaining weight does not depend on the amount of chocolate you consume, it depends on the number of calories your body needs in a day and the number of calories you burn in a day.
Maintaining a state of the caloric deficit is the key to stay in shape.
100 grams of 70-85% dark chocolate contains about 570 calories.
Now that is a big amount of calories if you consume 100 grams of a chocolate bar every day. You can still stay in shape if you follow daily workout on a regular basis, track your macronutrients and stay under the body’s caloric requirements.
Gaining weight is not about what you eat, it’s about how much you eat.