When most of us hear the word “chocolate”, we picture a chocolate bar snapped into two, or cutting through a chocolate birthday cake or dots of the good stuff in a stracciatella gelato. For us at All Things Delicious, we work with chocolate on a daily basis! Take for example ganache, we have luscious tubs of ganache on hand every day. Made of dark couverture chocolate from Ghana beans, we spread ganache on so many things in the bakery! Anyway, back to CHOCOLATE.
Do you know that there are many different forms and flavours of chocolate in the world? For instance, milk chocolate is one of the most common chocolates you’ve seen in the world. It is solid chocolate made with milk added in the form of powdered milk, liquid milk or condensed milk. On the other hand, the yummy bitter dark chocolate is produced using a higher percentage of cocoa and cocoa butter. Not to forget, white chocolate is made of sugar, milk and cocoa butter, without the cocoa solids.
So, have you ever wondered why you crave chocolate all the time? Chocolate tastes good, smells fantastic and who doesn’t like that feeling when chocolate slowly melts in our mouths? Nonetheless, we know you need more substantial reasons to convince yourself so here are our 5 top convincing reasons why you should go grab your favourite chocolate dessert right now.
- Great Stress Reliever
Chocolate is a great stress reliever. Dopamine, a “feel-good” neurotransmitter is released anytime you experience something that gives you pleasure and joy. In actual fact, chocolate contains phenylethylamine, which is the same chemical that your brain creates when you feel like you’re falling in love. So when one eats chocolate, it actually releases dopamine into your brain, and ultimately, it lowers your levels of stress. Guess that’s the reason why #TeamDelicious often craves chocolate in stressful situations (oooh yes, our Chocolate Almond Shortbread!). People also crave chocolate it when we are in need of comfort or reassurance, especially in these trying times - thanks COVID! While doing our research, we also found that eating dark chocolate may lower our stress hormones. Nevertheless, remember, moderation is key so chocolate therapy anyone?
- Comfort Food, Enhances Mood
Another thing to note is that our emotions play some part in the chocolate cravings too! We crave chocolate because we often associate it as comfort food (guilty as charged!), eating it as a mood booster especially when we are in low spirits or when we just need a push mid-day while working. It is also scientifically proven that dark chocolate actually contains compounds that stimulate endorphins, the same compounds that are let out whenever we exercise or laugh. Hence, if you need a good pick-me-up, you could always break off a square of quality dark chocolate or get a slice of our sea salt caramel brownie, that is made using our top 5 favourite ingredients: cultured European butter, cage-free eggs, French cream, pure vanilla and unrefined sugar, yummy!
- Magnesium Deficiencies
Surprise! Chocolate actually contains some amounts of magnesium, an essential mineral whereby many people, especially women, are deficient in. Over 300 enzyme reactions in our body require magnesium - it is no wonder that lacking in it could result in anxiety, irritability, migraine, fatigue, insomnia and lack of concentration. Dark chocolate with at least 70% cocoa is recommended! So please don’t blame yourself if you’re ever craving for chocolate, ladies, because you are not losing control, you may be suffering from magnesium deficiency! So go ahead and have your Dark Chocolate Torte and eat it too!
- Good For Weight Loss
This is for those who are struggling to lose weight! Do you know that dark chocolate can potentially reduce cravings and boost the feelings of fullness? In fact, a small piece of chocolate before a meal could trigger the hormones in the brain and say “I’m full!”. This eventually cuts the amount of food you subsequently consume. Studies also suggest that dark chocolate could improve a body’s sensitivity to insulin, the hormone responsible for shutting sugar out of your bloodstream and into your cells where it can be used for energy. This ultimately helps to decrease levels of insulin in the blood, which may be associated with increased weight loss and reduced fat storage. This may give a helping hand to prevent spikes and crashes in blood sugar levels, which can lead to symptoms like increased hunger. Last but not least, we also out found dark chocolate to have a positive effect on mental health and mood, which can help an individual to feel best and promote weight loss. Nonetheless, please take note that all this applies for dark chocolate only, so remember, don’t grab your favourite milk chocolate which is full of sugar!
- Athletic Performance
Calling all the fitness enthusiasts! During our research and development for our new celebration cakes, we discovered that dark chocolate can actually boost oxygen availability during fitness training! The success of dark chocolate is due to flavonoids which are known as epicatechins, which enhance the release of nitric oxide in the body. If anyone judges you for enjoying that dark chocolate protein bar, out-workout them hard! No, we’re kidding, maybe just unfriend them. ;)
Chocolate Crunch Ombre Cake
Well, there you have it! Chocolate is good for you! It elevates your mood by increasing pleasant feelings and reduces tension as well! So why not treat yourself to yummy desserts such as our new Good Ol’ Chocolate Cake and Chocolate Crunch Ombre Cake? You won’t regret it, Nuff said. Till then, take care!