Do you often wonder what to look for when choosing chocolates to gift your loved-ones? Let’s review some recommendations as Valentine’s Day approaches.
You may have heard that chocolate is good for your health and you aren’t wrong! Chocolate contains many antioxidants and a healthy dose of fiber which are beneficial for your heart and your GI tract, but it’s important to look for the right kind of chocolate as these benefits are primarily found in dark chocolate. When searching for the perfect candy bar, take a look at the cocoa content. The higher percentage of cocoa, the more health benefits it offers. Think greater than 70% cocoa. Some tasty brands can contain up to 99% cocoa for an intense chocolate flavor! A few bars to consider include the following:
Lindt Excellence: 70%, 78%, 85%, 90%, 95%, 99% can be found at Lindt
Chocolove: Strong Dark Chocolate (70%), Extra Strong (77%), Extreme (88%) can be found at Chocolove
Green and Black Chocolate: Pure Dark Chocolate (70%), Organic (70, 85%) can be purchased at Green and Black Chocolate
Additionally, there are a whole host of chocolate bars that offer protein from nuts or a burst of flavor with fruit to help you feel satisfied after your sweet treat! Some recommendations include:
Chocolove Almonds and Sea Salt in Strong Dark Chocolate. Can be found at Chocolove.
Endangered Species Luscious Blueberries and Dark Chocolate. Try it at Endangered Species.
Theo Orange Dark Chocolate. Buy it at Theo Chocolates.
As with any sweet treat, portion control should be practiced. Even though there are some health benefits to eating chocolate, the benefits are lost if large quantities are consumed regularly. Make sure to read the nutrition facts label for accurate serving sizes. Typically a serving is around 1–1 ½ ounces, which looks like half of a standard-sized bar or less. Indulge in moderation and enjoy!
And for a little sweet inspiration, check out this recipe for Heart Healthy Chocolate Mousse over at crazyforcrust.com.