Healthy Chocolate Tips by henryjohn34


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									Healthy Chocolate Tips

      Guilt Free Chocolate Recipes
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         Table of Contents

The History of Chocolate……………………………………….
The True Facts About Chocolate…………………………...
Chocolate and Your Health…………………………………...
Homemade Chocolate…………………………………………..
Healthy Chocolate…………………………………………………
The Benefits of Dark Chocolate……………………………..
More Chocolate Information…………………………………
Gluten Free Chocolate…………………………………………..
Raw Chocolate………………………………………………………
Vegan Chocolate……………………………………………………

               Guilt Free Chocolate Recipes
                        The History of Chocolate

The history of chocolate began with the fermented, roasted, ground
beans of the Theobroma cacao (cacao tree) which can be traced to
Mesoamerica, and dating back to 1900 BCE. These beans are what
gave birth to the Chocolate that so many worshipped centuries ago and
still love today. The Maya and Aztec used Chocolate in their royal and
religious ceremonies, often offering it to their gods. It was not until the
Europeans arrived that chocolate was sweetened with refined sugar
and fattened with milk.

The actual naming of chocolate is not truly known but thought that it
probably came from the Classical Nahuatl which meant bitter water
with Spanish origin. Others imply that it may have originated from the
Aztecs word chocolatl or xocolatl which is the combination of the words
xococ meaning bitter or sour and atl which means drink or water.
Some dispute this source, but offer no substantial evidence to support
their theories. Where the true word actually was derived from remains
a mystery in the history of chocolate.

The actual history of chocolate is quite interesting in that the beans
were used as "currency" by Hernando Cortez in 1519, whom than
established a cocoa plantation in the name of Spain, where "money"
would be cultivated. This was the birth of the profitable chocolate
business that thrives even today. The Spanish also experimented with
                          Guilt Free Chocolate Recipes
their new found delicacy and from bitter, refined it with sugar as well as
adding vanilla, nutmeg, cloves, allspice and cinnamon to produce a
highly coveted treat that they managed to keep secret from the rest of
the world for another 100 years. However, once discovered, the rest of
the world was quick to become addicted. During the 19th Century,
John Cadbury produced solid chocolate by an emulsification process
resulting in the modern chocolate bar still enjoyed today. Although
cocoa may have originated in the Americas, over two thirds of the
world's cocoa is now produced in Western Africa.

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Chocolate Facts - Little known and popular

Chocolate is one of the most recognized sweet treats in the world, yet
most of do not know basic chocolate facts. Like where it came from
how it got its start and how it became so wildly popular. Chocolate has
been called "the food of the gods" and for good reason. If someone is
feeling ill, we bring them chocolate, we give chocolate as gifts, and
treats and for happiness in general. Most sweet treats contain some
form of chocolate, either it is coated in it, made of it or contains
chocolate chips or bits. Chocolate is in a lot of the treats we eat.

Let's cover some basic chocolate facts first. Chocolate originates from
the cacao tree that supplies beans made for cocoa and chocolate. In
ancient Maya civilization, the cacao beans were so valuable they were
used as currency. The Maya and Aztec civilizations also believed that
chocolate was an aphrodisiac. This has some basis in truth, when you
eat chocolate your brain releases "feel good" endorphins, much of the
same endorphins are released when you are in love. Cocoa was a rare
commodity in the 17th century when it was introduced to the Central
Europe region via Spain in the 1600's. It immediately gained popularity
for uses in baking and drinks. Needless to say it has skyrocketed since
then, it is estimated that consumers spend annually seven million
dollars a year on chocolate products. Here are some industry chocolate
facts : the chocolate industry also uses 40% of the world's supply of
                         Guilt Free Chocolate Recipes
almonds and 20% of the world's supply of peanuts. American chocolate
manufacturers use 1.5 billion pounds of milk, the cheese and ice cream
industries are the only ones that use more.

Chocolate is now gaining a healthy reputation. It is rich in antioxidants
and keep be used to aid in depression, and premenstrual syndromes.
Whatever your reason for eating chocolate, you really do not even
need one. It's a treat that everyone loves.

                      Guilt Free Chocolate Recipes
Healthy Chocolate

Healthy Chocolate, it doesn't get much better when one of the world’s
most favorite foods is also good for you. Not only has research found
increasing evidence that chocolate can be part of our healthy diets, but
that it also may have health benefits. There is one catch though, not all
chocolate has been created equally. Chocolate is not quite the next big
health food, but there are definitely types of chocolate that do
contribute to better health besides the ones that are blamed for adding
to our waistlines.

The real health benefits of chocolate are found in the flavonoid content
of the cocoa bean. These flavonoid are natural compounds with
antioxidant properties, which are also found in berries, red wine and
green tea. The health benefits are reduced during the processing of
chocolate, as fewer flavonoids are retained which also reduces the
antioxidant abilities. The results are that white chocolate has no
benefits, but dark chocolate has almost four times the amount of
flavonoids compared to milk chocolate and thus is consider the healthy
chocolate. Dark chocolate with the list of ingredients showing cocoa
solids or cocoa mass first, rather than sugar or a high percentage of
70% or more cocoa are the best choices to obtain the highest
concentration of flavonoids.

To make a claim that dark chocolate can be good for you required some
science intervention. One study found that chocolate was ranked as
one of the top flavonoid-rich foods that offered a protective effect and
contribute to a lower risk of developing coronary heart disease.
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Another found that men whom consumed high amounts of cocoa had a
50% lower risk of developing cardiovascular disease compared to men
with lowest consumption. Researchers also found that small amounts
of dark chocolate could help lower blood pressure. During another
research program, it was learned that levels of low density lipoprotein
or the bad cholesterol dropped by 10% in the dark chocolate group. A
European study found that men whom preferred dark chocolate to
other types of sweets had lower body mass index and waist
circumference than men whom did not eat chocolate. And we all know
the happiness and well being that we experience when we eat
chocolate. Healthy chocolate definitely has good merit, however it
pleasures and benefits must be enjoyed in moderation.

                     Guilt Free Chocolate Recipes
Tips and Tricks in Making Homemade Chocolate

One of the most delicious treats that can come out of the kitchen is
homemade chocolate; unlike store-bought brands, homemade
chocolate has a higher chocolate content, and is a bigger treat as they
are able to better capture the flavor of the chocolate. Making chocolate
at home has never been easier, and with a lot of room for
experimentation, it can be easy creating the perfect recipe that will
amaze all the relatives at the family reunion.

The roasting process of making homemade chocolate is extremely
important. By roasting the chocolate beans in the oven, the flavor the
beans will be able to easily escape. Generally speaking, depending on
the chocolate beans being used, the best temperature for roasting the
chocolate beans lies between 250 and 325 degrees Fahrenheit. It will
take about 10 to 30 minutes for the chocolate beans to finish roasting.
Cracking sounds coming from the beans is a good indication that the
chocolate beans are done roasting. Depending on the intensity of flavor
desired, different roasting times and temperature will result in different
flavors; however, those looking to make quality chocolate should
always wait until the chocolate beans crack. It is important to
experiment in order to find the best combination that suits the
particular types of chocolate beans being used.

Other than the roasting process, the amount of cocoa butter and milk
added to the chocolate later on will also influence the overall flavor and
quality of homemade chocolate. Those who are unfamiliar with the
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amount of ingredients to add should gradually mix in some cocoa
butter and milk. A little bit can go a long way.

Last but not least, it is important to take pride in the folding of the
homemade chocolate. By folding the chocolate continuously upon
itself, the chocolate finish will be oilier, and smoother at the end.
Depending on the quality of the chocolate beans, this process may take
hours, but proper folding techniques will result in higher quality
homemade chocolate.

Homemade chocolate is definitely a treat as it is not only delicious, but
also higher in quality and able to bring out the natural flavor of the
chocolate beans. Depending on the amount of time spent processing
and making the chocolate, different results can be attained, and those
making homemade chocolate can alter and change the recipes in order
to get the best results possible.

                         Guilt Free Chocolate Recipes
          Chocolate and Health - Is Chocolate Really Healthy?

When thinking about chocolate and health, it is easy to assume that
chocolate is firmly on the not healthy list. But is that truly the case?

In order to find out more about chocolate and the health aspects of it,
it is important to discover what is contained in chocolate. Then we can
decide whether or not it is healthy.

 In chocolate you will find the ingredient cacao. Cacao is found more
predominantly in dark chocolate, and that is the most healthy
chocolate that you can eat. It has been found that people who eat two
or three bars of chocolate every month live significantly longer than
people who don't eat chocolate at all. So chocolate and health do have
a link after all. But what is so good about cacao?

The reason cacao is so good for us is it contains flavonoids. These
flavonoids are a good source of antioxidents, and they attack the free
radicals which are very damaging for our bodies. Free radicals are found
in air pollution, also in foods that we eat. Flavonoids also boost our
immune system, and help our bodies fight against disease.

Are there any other aspects of chocolate and health that we need to
consider? Well, yes there is. Cacao, which is the bean of the plant, has
been linked to helping fight cancer. It is possible to buy organic nibs of
cacao, or cocoa, as we probably know it. These nibs are baked and
some people eat them right out of the pack. However, this is quite an
acquired taste and it tastes much better when ground and used to
make drinking chocolate.
                          Guilt Free Chocolate Recipes
So, which is the best way to get your chocolate fix? Well if you want to
consider chocolate and health then you must eat chocolate bars that
contain at least 70% cocoa. Milk chocolate bars contain significantly
less cocoa, and some contain chemical flavorings which are not good
for the body at all. Or try some cocoa nibs and make a drinking
chocolate drink. Whichever way you choose, you will find that
chocolate is good for you after all.

                         Guilt Free Chocolate Recipes
Health Benefits of Dark Chocolate

Besides tasting good, there are other dark chocolate benefits. One of
the health benefits is preventing heart disease. Dark chocolate contains
flavonoids which work as antioxidants. Antioxidants are those
substances that reduce aging effects in the body caused by free radicals
that cause damage associated with conditions such as dementia, heart
disease and diabetes. Flavonoids are also useful in reduction of blood
pressure by producing nitric oxide and balancing certain hormonal
levels in the body. The flavonoid contained in dark chocolate also
lowers blood pressure and reduces LDL cholesterol also known as bad
cholesterol significantly thereby preventing heart disease.

Another area in which dark chocolate benefits are seen is in moods.
Dark chocolate stimulates endorphins production. Endorphins are
chemicals in the brain that cause feeling of joy and pleasure which help
in boosting your mood. This chocolate also contains serotins which are
anti-depressants. Theombromine, caffeine and other stimulants are
also found in dark chocolate. Eating dark chocolate also helps in
soothing coughs and increasing blood circulation. Studies have also
shown that dark chocolate benefits you by giving you a healthy
flavanoid called epicathechin which can help you to achieve an
enhanced performance if you eat it just before a work out. Epicathechin
also helps in resistance of fatigue by binding to receptors in muscles.
However, you should only eat a small amount to enjoy the performance
improving benefits because if you eat much, you might end up
overloading muscle receptors.
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Researchers in Germany have also found out that the flavonoids
contained in dark chocolate help in protecting your skin by absorbing
ultra violet rays from the sun, thereby protecting and increasing blood
flow to the skin, and significantly enhancing the skin’s hydration and
complexion. To enjoy the full benefits of dark chocolate you should
avoid washing it down with milk as that can hinder the absorption of
antioxidants by your body.

                         Guilt Free Chocolate Recipes
More Chocolate Information- Why We Love it So Much

Look no further for chocolate information. Here we will discuss that
amazing and widely loved treat that is derived from the cocoa bean.
Chocolate is by far one of the most beloved treats throughout the
entire world. Every country, it seems, has its own way of handling the
blessed bean and making it into a palatable treat for its people.

One bit of chocolate information is that it has become a staple for times
of struggle, frustration and depression. Many people turn to the bitter
bean to find comfort after a hard day. Similar to coffee or a beer, there
are those who reach for a bitter bar of dark chocolate, a steaming and
rich cup of hot cocoa, or a sweet snack of milky candy to ease their

Chocolate can be prepared in a wide variety of ways. Most commonly
in the States it is blended with sugar, lecithin and types of cream or milk
to make milk chocolate. Milk chocolate is much more sweet than it is
bitter, and lends more to those with the tendency toward a sweet

European chocolates tend to lend themselves far more to the bitter
side. Bitter chocolate does much more chemically for the brain in
setting loose those chemicals that most are going for with a chocolate
fix. Some American pallets find the bitter too much to handle.

Gourmet chocolate makers worldwide have been experimenting over
the years with flavor combinations and innovative ideas. More
chocolate specialty stores are popping up every year, providing creative
and spicy new chocolates to entice you.
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New chocolate information has been found over the last 50 years
especially, showing both its health benefits, as well as what it can do for
mood and pleasure. This can be enhanced by the combinations of
spices and more.

                          Guilt Free Chocolate Recipes
Gluten Free Chocolate

One of the most popular food advancements for people suffering with
a gluten allergy or celiac disease is great quality gluten free chocolate.
Finally the people suffering from these conditions can enjoy the sweet
guilty pleasures as the rest of the population without fear of allergic

In recent years, the gluten free food products have moved on
considerably, with a focus on the taste and texture of foods being
brought to the forefront of product development, rather than simply
creating foods that are safe to eat. Before these advancements, many
of the foods were bland, often compared to eating cardboard, due to a
lack of the elasticity agents in normal foods that gluten based products

Gluten free chocolate is one of the biggest advancements, and people
who do not suffer from either celiac disease or a gluten allergy will be
able to relate to this by thinking about the really cheap chocolate
products available to buy, particularly around the Christmas season.
Just like their regular food counterparts, the allergy friendly chocolate
now available stands head and shoulders above the previously available
versions. Today's chocolate products provide a much sweeter flavor
and smoother texture, so it is truly a product to enjoy. Now allergy
sufferers can enjoy the same indulgences that those without allergies
have always enjoyed.

In the future, the choice of treats available to celiac disease and gluten
allergy sufferers will only get better, with several new entrants to the
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 gluten free market in recent years. It is a logical expansion for these
companies, who usually begin by offering products such as breakfast
cereal due to the main brands failing to offer good gluten free
alternatives. As the market grows, expect to see many more allergy
friendly products, but for now gluten free chocolate is a fantastic
addition to the range of foods available to sufferers.

                      Guilt Free Chocolate Recipes
The Advantages of Raw Chocolate for Our Health

Raw cacao, generally known as raw chocolate or cocoa, is actually an
increasingly well known healthy option to typical chocolate. It is the
hunger controller so that it will help in reducing your weight. Raw
chocolate consists of enzymes which preserve anandamide, a chemical
substance produced inside the human brain if we're in a good feeling.
The chocolate also has phenylethylamines (PEAS), known as the
chemicals which make us feel like we are in love.

Raw chocolate is considered to become one of the main antioxidant in
the world. The chocolate’s antioxidants and flavonols improve the
nitric acid in blood stream to enhance blood circulation through the
human body as well as minimize blood pressure helping to control your
blood sugar level. Raw chocolate antioxidants are higher than in many
other foods. The ORAC reports reveal that the higher the ORAC value
the higher the level of antioxidant. Raw chocolate has a very high
ORAC value of 82,000. The 2 spices are Cloves with 314,000 ORAC
value, and also cinnamon with 267,000 ORAC value.

The wonder and beauty of raw chocolate becomes evident these times.
Its valuable nutrition is generally never heated over about one hundred
degrees. It is lower in caffeine and usually sweetened with a low
glycemic impact. The anandimides and phenylethylamine contained in
it can help us relax as well as make us feel great. In depth testing
throughout the years has frequently proven the advantages of these
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kinds of substances for the emotional health of individuals.

Raw chocolate additionally has neurotransmitter modulating agents
that are chemical substances which work as natural anti-depressants.
They let our neurotransmitters such as serotonin to stay within our
blood stream for a longer time than usual. This can make us younger.
Raw chocolate decreases cholesterol levels and therefore provides
positive effects on people with cardiovascular disease.

                         Guilt Free Chocolate Recipes
Vegan Chocolate Is The Food Of Vegan Gods

It has been said that chocolate is the food of the Gods, but if you think
just because you are vegan you have to give up all of your sweet treats
think again, because the good news is that vegan chocolate is readily
available and provides enough smooth sweetness to satisfy even the
most dedicated of chocolate lovers.

Some of the best vegan chocolate (dairy free) is made from organic
cocoa beans, soy lecithin and dehydrated cane juice with Stevia. Being
made from organic products vegan chocolate is considered healthy and
is thought to have healing properties, making it a guilt free indulgence.
Despite serious reservations of many vegans, vegan chocolate tastes
great and is just as smooth and flavorful as standard chocolate. It is
also possible to make your own vegan chocolate, though it is not an
easy process but can be worthwhile.

Many chocolate producers have realized the very real need to supply
vegans with great tasting chocolate, both in snack bar form, chocolate
drink mix and cooking chocolate, thereby making vegan chocolate as
readily available as standard chocolate. Chocolate does not have to be
made from milk, so chances are that if you take the time to read the
labels, you will be able to find vegan chocolate in your local
supermarket. Not only for vegans; this type of chocolate is a much
welcomed solution for chocolate lovers that have a lactose intolerance,
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and anyone seeking a healthier lifestyle without giving up all
indulgences. Many dark chocolates possessing at least 70% cocoa are
dairy free vegan, but it is advisable to read the label before eating, as
some companies still add milk to their dark chocolate. Unfortunately it
is not sufficient to assume that products labeled as being vegan
chocolate are truly vegan. Experiment with the many different brands
available until you find one that you really enjoy.

 Check Out The Book Below For Some FANTASTIC Healthy Chocolate
             Recipes…..Your Family Will Beg For More!

                      Guilt Free Chocolate Recipes

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