New Science Proves You Should Eat Chocolate Every Day
CBN.com THE CHOCOLATE CHALLENGE
Will says the latest cutting-edge research shows that people who eat dark chocolate weigh less than those who don’t. Researchers from the University of San Diego found that those who ate dark chocolate at least five times a week had a BMI that was on average a full point lower than those who didn’t eat chocolate.
A 2010 study published in the Journal of Psychopharmacology reported on 72 subjects who ate cocoa polyphenols (antioxidants) daily. After 30 days, their anxiety had decreased by 10 percent. Other medical studies showed that subjects who ate small amounts of dark chocolate every day reported a decrease in their appetites; other research shows subjects showed a 35 percent reduction in fatigue and a 45 percent reduction in depression. Dr. Clower says other studies showed that subjects who had a consistent consumption of cocoa rich in flavanol antioxidants showed improved artery function by 30%.
Recent research also shows the results of two groups of athletes who exercised hard twice a day. One group was given a traditional carbohydrate drink and the other group was given a cocoa drink. Results showed the athletes who drank the cocoa drink produced 57% more energy during their workout than those who drank the standard carbohydrate drink. Will based his Eat Chocolate, Lose Weight on this foundation of research along with his experiences. “I’ve provided these principles for tens of thousands of people,” he says. Not only did Will apply his neuroscience training to understand the relationship between eating and behaviors, but he interviewed scienctists to make sure his sense of the scientific research was correct.
There’s chocolate and then there’s “chocolate.” Will clarifies the difference between good and bad chocolate. “All the amazing weight-loss and health benefits of chocolate come from one place: cocoa,” says Will. “High cocoa content equals high health benefits.” To lose weight eating chocolate, Will says just eat solid, dark chocolate with at least 70% cocoa. This is becoming the standard definiation of a healthy cocoa concentration. He says don’t go dutch. Going dutch means the manufacturer has taken the normal chocolate liquor and added some alkali (potassium or sodium carbonates which makes for a milder taste). “When you dumb down the flavor,” says Will, “you also dramatically reduce perhaps the single most important health property of chocolate: its antioxidants.”
TAKING THE CHOCOLATE CHALLENGE
There are many chocolate challenges that Will recommends. To start, clean your pantry of unhealthy chocolates. Read the ingredient list: if there are any additive sugars, wafers, nougat or caramel, throw it out. Will says it will take time to adjust to eating healthier chocolates (those with over 70% cocoa). Many stores now carry healthier chocolates. Some of his top chocolates are: Green & Black’s: http://us.greenandblacks.com; Amano: www.amanochocolate.com; Guittard: http://guittard.com; Vairhona: www.valrhona-chocolate/shop/index.php; and Soma: www.somachocolate.com/SOMA_home.html
Portion control is important. His chocolate “rule of thumb” is to use your thumb. Give yourself a thumbs up. Bend the thumb joint. The size of your piece of solid dark chocolate should match the end joint of your thumb. To use dark chocolate to lose weight: consume 8 thumb-sized pieces (1 ounce) daily, spreading that throughout the day.
If incorporating recipes with 70% or higher cocoa content, keep in mind the calorie density can quickly add up so eat small bites and focus on flavor.
Will will show us his favorite “go to” dark chocolates as well as the following recipes from his book:
Black Strappin’ Chocolate Smoothie page 249, Spicy Beef Stew page 216, Earl Grey Hot Chocolate page 246, Chocolate Coconut Oat Bars, page 234 and Chocolate Dipped Strawberries