“Avoid Eating Chocolate Regularly
Until You Know These Hidden Facts”
Candies with sugars, HFCS, and other
frightening ingredients can wreak havoc on your health. Now there¹s
a chocolate you can enjoy without these negatives
Few snack foods evoke as much passion
and desire as chocolate.
If you're a chocolate lover, the idea
of giving it up even for health reasons is often not an option you consider.
And if you have children... well, most
kids love chocolate. Asking them not to eat any when they¹re with
friends or at home is pretty much wishful thinking.
Believe it or not, this is one instance
when you can have your chocolate and eat it too... more and more studies
confirm some types of chocolate are actually very good for you.
Since I realize many people simply refuse
to give up their chocolate, and there are actually healthy versions
of chocolate, I put my team to task to create guidelines to help you
select and eat chocolate at a healthy level.
Around the holidays or really at any
time, this could help give you some direction for the healthiest chocolate
for you and your kids.
I do feel it's important to remind you
about wholesome foods like organic vegetables and fruits that provide
you with healthy nutrients -- without the sugar content of most chocolates.
The potential for you and your family
to consume even more chocolate during holidays is simply a reality that
you will have to contend with. However, if you follow the guidelines
my staff and I created for you, you can now enjoy one of your passions,
and boost your health at the same time.
Guidelines for Selecting Healthy Chocolate
If you're a chocolate lover, or even
occasionally indulge, I strongly recommend you follow these guidelines...
which will allow you to enjoy your chocolate and help you protect your
health at the same time.
* Find chocolate made from the least destructive processing techniques
-- Organic is always best as over-processing reduces your healthy nutrients
and can introduce lead contamination.
* Restrict your intake to dark, organic chocolate -- Consuming chocolate
as close to its original raw state (unprocessed cacao) provides you
the best health benefits.
* Avoid chocolate made from milk or milk byproducts -- Adding milk to
the chocolate process can diminish your antioxidant benefits.
* Select chocolate with low sugar content -- Sugar can seriously impact
your immune system
* Consume chocolate in moderation -- When you eat too much chocolate,
you potentially diminish and defeat any health benefits due to the sugar.
* Avoid chocolate if you're struggling with a health challenge -- Sugar
can suppress your immune system.
* Choose a chocolate made to the highest standards of social and environmental
responsibility -- Fair Trade certification should be part of your selection
I'll get into more details on each of
these selection and consumption criteria in just a minute...
But first do this -- very thoroughly...
READ the LABEL to Avoid the "Devil"
Lurking in Your Chocolate
In addition to the above guidelines,
there are certain "spooky" ingredients you should stay far
away from when choosing your chocolate.
If you have kids, you might want to take
a closer look at the chocolate they consume on a regular basis. Not
an easy task, I realize... but these ingredients are just plain bad
Even many so-called "natural"
chocolates may contain some of these unhealthy ingredients -- avoid
them at all costs...
* Trans fat -- An artery-clogging type of fat that forms when vegetable
oils are hardened into margarine or shortening.
* High-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) -- Contains no enzymes, vitamins or
minerals, and leeches micronutrients from your body. Raises your blood
sugar levels beyond acceptability, and leads to insulin resistance and
weight gain. It really is a metabolic poison and, in many ways, acts
identical to alcohol with chronic exposure when eaten in high amounts.
* Artificial sweeteners -- Never allow anything "artificial"
in your chocolate.
* Soy proteins -- Unfermented soy can cause digestive distress and a
weakened immune system.
* Monosodium Glutamate (MSG) -- An excitotoxin, which over-excites your
cells to the point of damage or total destruction. Can potentially cause
brain damage and other disabilities to varying degrees.
* Preservatives and stabilizers -- Avoid anything artificial and look
for only organic ingredients.
* Milk or milk byproducts -- Could impact how well you absorb the healthy
antioxidants in the chocolate.
The bottom line -- you need to carefully
read the label on chocolate packages. By Oreading' the label, I mean,
Othoroughly scrutinize the nutrition facts and ingredients'. Not just
a cursory glance.
To enjoy the healthiest chocolate possible,
always look for selections with wholesome, organic ingredients -- artificial
ingredients are just too risky.
I realize finding the healthiest chocolate
may not be an easy task. But with the research my team and I performed,
I can help you narrow down your selection.
First off though, I believe it's important
for you to understand the brief history of chocolate and how it ended
up to be such a sugary concoction today.
How Cacao Went from Healthy Brew to Sugary Sweet Deception
To start with, you may not realize chocolate
actually comes from a plant... the theobroma cacao tree to be more precise.
Cocoa beans, the fermented ground seeds
from the fruit of the cacao tree, have been used as consumable ingredients
for the last 3.4 millennia.
Discovered in 2,600-year-old Mayan ceramic
containers in northern Belize, Cacao dates back thousands of years.
This pushes the onset of mankind's love of chocolate back another 1,000
years from previous findings.
The main differences between cacao thousands
of years ago and modern day chocolate involve its usage and processing.
The ancient Mayans used raw cacao to...
* Create a bitter-tasting frothy beverage
* Provide them significant caloric value
* Boost their energy and vigor
In other words, cacao was an important
element in their everyday healthy diet.
Fast forward to today and modern-day
chocolate processing... fermented cocoa beans from the cacao tree get
processed into a sugary sweet, mass-marketed commodity.
Today's chocolate products are far removed
from their historical usage and beneficial raw potency.
The point here is not to put down today's
chocolate, but to make you aware that the source of chocolate, the cacao
tree, does yield potential health benefits. It's the over-processing
of cacao into modern-day chocolate that eliminates most of your benefits.
So, finding a chocolate closer to its
original raw cacao state will be healthier for you.
Cacao is very bitter and almost unpalatable
by itself. But I can assure you there is a healthy chocolate waiting
for you that adheres to the above guidelines.
A Deep, Dark Health Secret Revealed
Emerging evidence during the past decade
supports the health benefits of resveratrol... to the point of becoming
one of my favorite antioxidants.
Resveratrol is a very potent antioxidant
compound produced by certain fruits and vegetables including grapes,
raspberries, mulberries, and peanuts.
Realizing that chocolate also comes from
a plant (theobroma cacao tree) whose fruit produces cocoa beans, you
may not be surprised at the scientific findings about it.
In fact, scientists report dark chocolate,
baking chocolate, and cocoa powder all contain significant levels of
This potent antioxidant is somewhat different
from the rest. It not only helps you neutralize free radicals, but can
also cross your blood-brain barrier to help protect your brain and nervous
Studies show that resveratrol may increase
the lifespan in human cells. So, it could be a determining factor in
extending your longevity.
Plus, resveratrol benefits you by how
* Protects your cells from free radical damage
* Helps you keep your blood pressure within the normal range
* Promotes your healthy heart and cardiovascular system
* Helps improve your blood vessel elasticity
* Boosts your protection against the spread of abnormal cell activity
* Helps you better control the aging process
* Supports your body's natural defense system
In addition, it's important for you to
understand there are 2 different forms of resveratrol -- "cis"
and "trans." Both may be blended together in certain foods.
The difference between the two forms
is the result of their molecular structure, and involves organic chemistry
However, the most researched form of
resveratrol that provides you enhanced health benefits is trans-resveratrol.
This is the form of resveratrol found in dark chocolate.
So, now you see why I strongly recommend
dark, unprocessed chocolate as
part of your selection criteria.
Other types of chocolate, including milk
chocolate, potentially process out most or all of your antioxidant benefits.
Powerful, Potent Polyphenols Pack a Punch
Fortunately, you can enjoy the same nutritional
benefits of dark chocolate by consuming other raw vegetables and fruits
such as muscadine grapes, apples, blueberries, spinach, kale, and broccoli,
to name a few.
But if you're a chocolate lover, I realize
this probably won't satisfy you.
My strongest word of advice is that you
do not consider dark chocolate a substitute for healthy vegetables and
fruits... only as a savory complement.
Now that we've established dark chocolate
as your best chocolate selection, let's take a closer look at more potential
Many of the benefits found in cacao are
a result of antioxidant activity associated with polyphenols, particularly
the flavanols called catechin and epicatechin, which...
* Increase blood flow in your arteries
* Lower your levels of C-reactive protein for enhanced heart protection
* Help support normal cholesterol levels
* Promote your nervous system and cerebral health
* Support your glucose metabolism
* Help boost your immune system
But all these wonderful benefits from
dark chocolate are only as good as the process used to create the end
In fact, some dark chocolate producers
remove the beneficial flavanols during processing to eliminate the bitter
taste. By doing so, they're essentially diminishing your potential health
Organic and Fair Trade Certification --
Critical Paths to Healthy Dark Chocolate
The process used to produce dark chocolate
should be a key element in your selection criteria.
Organic Dark Chocolate Made in the USA
Joseph Whinney had a dream. He wanted
to establish the first organic chocolate factory in the US. See, prior
to 2006, Europe produced the majority of organic chocolate and exported
it to the US.
Joe started fulfillment of his dream
in 1994, when he pioneered the importation of organic cocoa beans into
North America. But to get to this point, Joe labored hard for many years
with cacao growers in the tropics of Central America and Africa.
During the time he spent with the cacao
farmers he witnessed the degradation of the rainforest and economic
adversity endured by the farmers, first-hand.
Joe quickly recognized these issues could
only be addressed through economic solutions.
By combining his passion for cacao with
a strong desire to help the farmers, Joe realized his dream in 2006,
when he established the first and only organic Fair Trade chocolate
factory in the USA.
Why is that so important?
First of all, to maximize your health
advantages from dark chocolate, it's crucial you find organically certified
chocolate... USDA certified.
It's not enough for the manufacturer
to claim organic ingredients. The entire process used to produce the
chocolate and the ingredients must be certified organic.
It's as simple as that... yet isn't all
that easy to find.
In addition to organic certification,
I strongly recommend a chocolate producer to be what's called Fair Trade
Fair Trade is a system of exchange that
honors the chocolate producers, communities, consumers, and the environment...
a manufacturer's commitment to social and environmental responsibility
Why does this matter?
Well, Fair Trade certification helps
ensure that the manufacturer...
* Uses only pure ingredients in the chocolate
* Partners closely with cacao farmers and growers
* Respects employees and suppliers
* Uses green energy sources to power chocolate production
* Employs sustainable packaging and printing methods
The bottom line for you? A chocolate
manufacturer who is Fair Trade Certified delivers a more consistent
product at a fair price with a commitment to social responsibility.
Here's a graphic example (below) of how
conventional and Fair Trade supply chains compare.
Graphic adapted from: "What is
Fair Trade?" and retrieved from
Notice how the Fair Trade chain cuts
out several excessive steps. The extra steps usually mean only one thing
-- extra processing cost and less nutritional value by the time the
product reaches YOU.
That's why I believe so strongly that
it's critical for you to select an organically certified and Fair Trade
Certified dark chocolate.
How Much Chocolate Can You Eat?
Now that we're zeroing in on the ultimate
dark chocolate for you to enjoy and to help give your health a boost,
let me remind you that I recommend you still eat chocolate in moderation.
So just how much is moderate consumption?
Well, if you really want to eat dark
chocolate for health purposes, researchers in an Italian study...
* Focused on the complex mechanism of inflammation -- a risk factor
for the development of cardiovascular disease
* Found that those who ate dark chocolate had a 17% reduction in C-reactive
* Concluded that 6.7 grams of dark chocolate per day represented the
These findings come from one of the largest
epidemiological studies ever conducted in Europe.
So, once again, the health benefits of
dark chocolate shine through. But the guidelines I've laid out should
be carefully followed to fully garner those benefits.
Eating chocolate in moderation will help
you stay healthy, while enjoying a savory chocolate treat at the same
time. But remember, even organic dark chocolate has sugar in it; so
too much isn't a healthy formula for your overall wellbeing.
It¹s especially important to be
careful around holiday times to keep your chocolate consumption under
control. Don¹t gorge yourself ...
Not All Dark Chocolates Are Created Equally
As my team and I searched for a dark
chocolate to recommend to you, we were quite surprised by how many differences
exist between products.
For instance... does your dark chocolate
go through a rigorous process such as this to ensure unsurpassed quality
using organic ingredients?...
* Harvesting -- Cocoa pods selected at their ripest levels before seeds
removed, fermented, and dried to ensure perfect quality
* Roasting -- Cocoa beans meticulously roasted to bring out slight spice
and berry flavors
* Cracking and milling -- Cocoa beans expertly cracked and milled to
release creamy butter giving the chocolate a silky smooth texture that
melts in your mouth
* Flavor balancing -- Very small amounts of organic and Fair Trade sugar
precisely added before conching (smoothing process) to ensure perfectly
* Final blending -- Organic vanilla and other organic ingredients slowly
blended into each specific bar for irresistible taste
... my Organic Fair Trade Dark Chocolate
And focusing in on sugar, take a look
at the chart (below) comparing the sugar content of some popular dark
chocolate brands. It's important to note that the amount of sugar is
based on serving size.
With somewhat loose standards for serving
sizes, it's easy to become confused on sugar content. Many manufacturers
use ounces as opposed to grams, which can be further confusing.
So, in the chart below, I calculated
the fractional amounts (in grams) of sugar per gram of chocolate bar
based on the serving size for each offering... this tells you the true
Dark Chocolate Bar Serving size (grams) Sugar/serving (grams) Sugar/gram
of chocolate (grams)
Hershey's Special Dark Chocolate 1 bar (41 grams) 21 grams 0.512 sugar
Dove Rich Dark Chocolate 5 pieces (40 grams) 19 grams 0.475 sugar per
Nestle Treasures -- Dark Chocolate Caramel 3 pieces (36 grams) 17 grams
0.472 sugar per gram
Dagoba Organic Chocolate, dark 1 ounce (28.3 grams) 12 grams 0.424 sugar
Trader Joes 73% Organic Dark Chocolate 4 sections (33 grams) 9 grams
0.273 sugar per gram
Ghirardelli Intense Dark Twilight Delight 1 square (11 grams) 3 grams
0.273 sugar per gram
My Organic Fair Trade Dark Chocolate 1Z2 bar (42 grams) 8 grams 0.190
sugar per gram
Chart adapted from nutritional facts found at the following sites:
You should be able to see from the chart,
that my Organic Fair Trade Dark
Chocolate has one of the lowest rates of sugar content per gram. This
is good news for you. It's a primary reason I wanted to locate a truly
healthy, low sugar, dark chocolate bar that I could recommend to you.
Here's the Report Card on My Recommendation
Now that I've introduced you to my own
brand of organic dark chocolate, my Organic Fair Trade Dark Chocolate
, let's review how this bar and its manufacturer stack up against my
I can assure you I wouldn't be recommending
this bar if it didn't pass all my guidelines with flying colors.
Selection criteria My Organic Fair Trade Dark Chocolate Other Brands
Is chocolate produced from the least destructive processing techniques?
Yes -- certified organic chocolate helps assure this Not all dark chocolate
brands use organic ingredients or are certified organic
Does chocolate avoid milk or milk byproducts? Yes -- milk or its byproducts
not used in the process Many dark chocolate bars contain milk and milk
Does chocolate have low sugar content? Yes -- as detailed in the sugar
comparison chart, this chocolate has some of the lowest sugar content
per gram. Not all dark chocolates have low sugar contents. In fact,
some have 2-3 times as much per gram as my Organic Fair Trade Dark Chocolate
Does manufacturer achieve the highest standards of social and environmental
responsibility? Yes -- the Joe Whinney established manufacturer of my
Organic Fair Trade Dark Chocolate is Fair Trade Certified and certified
organic by the USDA To find a manufacturer of dark chocolate both organically
and Fair Trade Certified is a rare occurrence.
Does manufacturer avoid adding unhealthy ingredients like: trans fat,
corn syrup, artificial sweeteners, soy proteins, MSG, preservatives
and stabilizers, milk and milk by products? Yes -- this manufacturer
goes to great lengths to eliminate unhealthy ingredients from its chocolate
Only wholesome, organic ingredients are used. Not all chocolate and
dark chocolate bars on the market use organic ingredients and avoid
unhealthy additives. The key for you is to read all labels closely.
I selected an established chocolate manufacturer
that is both certified organic (USDA) and Fair Trade Certified -- all
this to provide you the highest quality dark chocolate... at the fairest
price... and with a total commitment to social and environmental responsibility.
My Organic Fair Trade Dark Chocolate
is one of your best choices for healthy dark chocolate.
3 Distinct Natural Flavors You Can Choose From
Not everyone has the same taste in chocolates...
So to provide you with a choice you'll
love, you have three distinct flavors of dark chocolate bars to choose
All three dark bars come from the same
unique manufacturer... certified organic and Fair Trade Certified to
deliver natural, organic dark chocolate.
And all three bars have 80% cocoa content
with low sugar amounts... one of my top selection criteria. Shouldn't
it be one of yours as well?
The three mouth-watering flavors you
can choose from are:
* Rich Dark Chocolate -- a robust organic dark chocolate sure to please
the chocolate lover in you
* Cherry & Almond -- dark chocolate combined with tangy, sweet organic
cherries and crunchy roasted almonds
* Mint -- a unique blend of spearmint and peppermint to create a surprisingly
smooth bright taste.
Even if you're not a total chocolate
lover, you still might want to try one of these flavors. In moderation,
you'll be surprised on how delicious something this healthy can taste.
Use the chocolates to complement your
healthy diet of wholesome (preferably organic) vegetables and fruits...
substitute my Organic Fair Trade Dark
Chocolate for tempting sugary milk-chocolate sweets during the holidays
or at any time
And if you have children, why not replace
their over-processed sugary treats with healthy dark chocolate? You
have 3 delicious flavors to choose from.
I must admit, the success of my
team's research on this product totally surprised me. I never imagined
such a healthy chocolate product existed from such a responsible manufacturer...
a great combination for YOU.