What if we told you eating dark chocolate promotes heart health? That’s right! Dark chocolate contains antioxidants called flavonoids, which lower the risk of heart disease. BOOM!! Dark chocolate can also decrease inflammation and is a tasty way to fill up on fiber and magnesium which will improve digestion and your mood! Sorry, we aren’t talking about Hershey’s or Dove “dark” chocolate. We recommend >70% cacao in the dark chocolate you buy. The higher the cacao content the greater the benefits. While cacao is technically a plant, we don’t recommend eating it like you do salad!!! See our top tips on how to enjoy chocolate as part of your healthy diet!
- Look at the ingredients list. Fillers, industrial oils and emulsifiers often find their way into many shelf-stable food products. Be mindful of the nutrition label – some dark chocolate brands have more added ingredients than others!
- Savor it. Don’t eat it while running out the door. Chocolate is meant to be ENJOYED! Rushing through the moment dilutes the experience of snacking on a delicious treat. Our favorite way to enjoy chocolate is with a cup of coffee or tea.
- Keep it in the freezer. Not only does freezing dark chocolate keep it fresh, but it also helps with mindful portioning since you’ll eat it slower.
- Quality over quantity. Look for dark chocolate brands that source quality ingredients. Some of the best bars contain fewer than 5 ingredients. ‘Diet chocolate’ just doesn’t taste as good and can cause GI distress. Look out for ingredients like erythritol and xylitol. Natural yes but hard on your gut.
- Mind your portions. There is such a thing as too much of a good thing. Overeating even healthy foods can cause unwanted symptoms and side effects. To avoid a stomach ache or even excess weight, view chocolate as a treat, not a meal.
Some of our favorite dark chocolate brands are:
- Hu Almond Crunch Organic 70% Cacao Dark Chocolate – delicious, crunchy, and a perfect treat for those who aren’t fans of super bitter dark chocolate.
- Theo Pure 85% Dark Chocolate – made from organic and sustainably-sourced ingredients. A great option for ‘in the middle’ dark chocolate fans.
- Endangered Species Dark Chocolate, Strong + Velvety, 88% Cocoa – perfect for those who like a richer, more bitter dark chocolate bar.
- Madecasse Dark Chocolate, Pure, Madagascar, 92% Cocoa – organic, direct trade, vegan, and kosher – this dark chocolate bar is great for those who like a very strong, bitter cocoa taste.
- Unreal dark chocolate coconut bars – these bars are bite sized, making mindful portioning a breeze. They have up to 51% less sugar than leading brands and are made with just 3 ingredients!