5 Things You Didn’t Know About Chocolate

valentine chocolate

photo: dark-chocolate-life.com

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Flowers, wine, and chocolate are a big part of this festive day. Here are some interesting chocolate facts that you can use to impress your loved ones.

1. 5% of annual chocolate sales occur on Valentine’s Day.

2. Chocolate comes from cocoa beans whose degree of bitterness depends on the bean variety. The bitter compounds contain a family of antioxidants called phenols, that been shown to reduce blood pressure.

3. The vast majority of chocolate sold is “milk chocolate”. Less than 30% of the products is actually a derivative of cocoa beans; the rest is sugar and milk, which may actually negate some of the antioxidant activity.

4. Experts recommend switching to dark chocolate, which must legally contain at least 35% cocoa mass. The higher the cocoa mass, the more health benefits. Have you tried an 85% cocoa mass chocolate?

5. Nutritionally, chocolate is high in sugar and saturated fats. Take a premium dark chocolate, for example. A standard reference size serving (12 small squares weighing in at 1.5 ounces) has 250 calories and 60% of your daily maximum value for saturated fat.

  • Kieron

    “…and 60% of your daily maximum value for saturated fat.” That is, IF you believe the dominant dietary paradigm. This is the same crew that tells us to eat lots of carbs and muscle meat, and avoid butter and saturated fats, and yet people have gotten sicker and fatter with every successive generation. I eat all the “wrong” foods–lots of saturated fats (in the form of butter, coconut oil, etc) and organ meats when I can get them, and yet my health and weight have never been better. My doctor can’t figure out why my blood chemistry/lab reports are so good.

    • Healthy Man

      You may have a very efficient metabolism, or your arteries are being coated with lipids and don’t show up on blood tests.

  • Aria Gonzalez

    Personally, I don`t care about saturated fat… the sugar isn`t too great though. Right now I`ve actually got cocoa paste that I`m eating. It`s like baker`s chocolate. You know you like chocolate when you can eat that straight… :)

  • Laura

    I eat a lot of dark chocolate. To be precise, 1/4″ cup a day of shredded 70% cocoa mass over a serving of Greek yogurt and fresh fruit. It keeps the cravings for junk food down and helps me lose weight because it contains monounsaturated fatty acids. You can also eat peanut butter on toast with bananas on top guilt free. Olive oil, nuts, avocados, dark chocolate.. All get an unjustified bad rap. Why eat aspartame diet foods when you can enjoy healthy, weight loss helping “junk food”? Once I learned this, the weight dropped off like an ice cube in hot coffee, and stayed off for the past 4 years.

    • Healthy Man

      Just make sure the portion sizes are small!!!

  • Hambone

    I’m not a huge fan of dark chocolate but I’ll eat it Any way

  • Healthy Man

    The key, like everything else, is to eat small amounts of foods that are high in fat, sugar, and carbs. http://www.healthyman.co

  • Dale

    Actually I love dark chocolate but I can’t seem to get above 75% cacao. I melt it in the microwave then use it as a dip for fresh fruit. YUM!

  • Mehness

    It is also apparently high in copper…