Valentine’s day is quickly approaching. Valentine’s day is a great day to express your love to your loved ones. It is also important to show yourself some love too. What’s your favourite treat to treat yourself with? Could it be chocolate?
Pretty and delicious looking chocolate can be tempting. But not all chocolates are created equal, some are better than others. For those of us with health concerns, especially our network of breast cancer graduates, we ask, can we treat ourselves to a few pieces of chocolate once in a while?
There have been mixed results when it comes to the research on the benefits of chocolate. There are some reports that says that chocolate can lower the risks of certain cancers, and other reports that says chocolate show no benefits. So what does this mean when you are craving chocolate? Having small amounts of high-quality dark chocolate with at least 70% cocoa is best when we’re craving chocolate. It has been found that high-quality dark chocolates contain antioxidants. You should stay away from milk chocolate and white chocolate because they provide little to no benefits, and are often high in fat and sugar.
We recently got a chance to speak with Cynthia Leung who is the co-owner of SOMA Chocolatemaker, a local chocolate shop with two locations right here in Toronto. As we know not all chocolates are created equal, the quality of cacao beans used in the making of the chocolate determines its flavour. Cynthia said that “all the cacao we use is considered “flavour grade” which means that firstly the DNA of the cacao beans are of high quality and secondly the farmer has carefully grown and taken great care in the post harvest steps of fermenting and drying of the cacao beans. This is where the first signs of flavour notes specific to the bean are developed.”
When it comes to chocolate, there are healthier choices out there. So if you are seeking a healthier option, Cynthia suggests trying their Arcana 100% or any of their 70% dark chocolates. She said:
“The healthiest choice of chocolate at our shops is the Arcana 100% it has no sugar added all cacao so its mineral rich and chocked full of antioxidants. It is surprisingly very popular for people that love tasting all the complexities in flavour grade cacao beans. 2nd choice would be any of our 70% dark chocolate, we usually have around 10 different origins ranging from the quiet and elegant Porcelana from Venezuela, to the Jamaica with a honey base and notes of raspberries so there are lots to choose from depending on your tastebuds”.
When you are enjoying some delicious chocolate be cautious and don’t over indulge. Enjoy your chocolate, but don’t forget to share.
Happy Valentine’s Day, and spread the love.