The Incredible Edible Dark Chocolate

The Incredible, Edible Dark Chocolate

Dark chocolate is healthy. Medical and Scientific research validate dark chocolate as a potential life saver. Dark chocolate could be the opposite of the “White Knight” coming to our rescue!
Sounds a little odd doesn’t it? Chocolate being anything other than decadent. Haven’t you been taught since time immemorial that chocolate will:

  • Cause tooth decay
  • Cause acne or pimples
  • Contains caffeine

…and the list could go on.

So just address each of those items one at a time, and see what you come up with.

Causes tooth decay

Dark chocolate does not have the sugar content, nor milk solids and other additives commonly found in milk chocolate. In fact, the cocoa butter contained in dark chocolate actually coats the teeth to avoid plaque build-up.

Even more amazing is the fact that dark chocolate reduces the craving for sweets, which would seem to make it work against itself as far as consumption. In a sense, it could be looked upon as a green leafy vegetable that you may not care to eat that much, but you do it anyway because you know it’s good for you and it’s just not that disagreeable to eat.

Are you kidding me? Dark chocolate mentioned in the same sentence with green leafy vegetables? Not really a fair comparison, but you get the idea. Keep in mind this is talking about the fact that the craving for “sweets” is reduced, and the truth is, that includes the sweetness of dark chocolate!

Now would be a good time to clarify something that may be lurking in the back of your mind. Isn’t dark chocolate bitter to start with? Depends. There are many types of dark chocolate, as you have surely noticed just looking at the candy section of your favorite supermarket. Cocoa content can go anywhere from 60% to 75%, with a few exceptions that might go higher, but not usually found in your local store.

Back in the day, “mom’s” Bakers Chocolate was some nasty, bitter tasting stuff worse than a spoonful of pure, Hershey’s cocoa powder. Now that’s not a slam against Hershey’s at all or dark chocolate or cocoa powder. That’s just the way it is. It’s the nature of the beast. You know, you can’t change the fact that the sun comes up in the East, and you can’t change the fact that pure cocoa powder is bitter to the tongue!

OK, so back to the subject which is dark chocolate bitter or not?

These days, with the proliferation of health information about dark chocolate it’s all over the place in seemingly a “gazillion” different combinations and strengths. And, some are more bitter tasting to the tongue than others. There are certainly exceptions which you can read about at sites that deal specifically with dark chocolate!

It all depends on your sense of taste in the end. There are conflicting beliefs on whether or not there are “taste zones” in the tongue. A good indication for you is if it tastes bitter “anywhere” on your tongue! That should put that to rest.

Causes acne or pimples

There is truly what could be called an “old wives tale” about this. It’s been around forever, but the possible implication is that it derived from a similar story about this guy that got all dressed up in a red suit and gave toys to kids all over the world in one night!

Now that’s not sayin’ the red suit story is wrong, but the acne and pimple thing sure is! Not a shred of truth! In fact, it would be nearly impossible (notice I did NOT say impossible) to even have an allergic reaction to chocolate. Having said that, since 85% of allergies have been proven to be stress related, it’s possible it could happen. Just not likely!

Acne and pimples are the skins way of reacting to changes in the levels of testosterone in the guys and estrogen in the gals. That’s it. No great mystery. Dark chocolate is found “not guilty as charged!”

Contains caffeine

Here it goes again. There has never, ever, been one shred of medical, scientific, biological or zoological (just threw that one in there) research or evidence that the cacao bean contains one iota of caffeine! It’s sort like the rumor that gets spread around that you have something shady in your background. There’s not a shred of truth to it, but it follows you around as though it were written in stone!

A substance called theobromine is in cacao, and the biological and chemical make-up look extremely similar to caffeine. And to be sure, theobromine is an energy producing substance, but that is about all the resemblance it has to caffeine.

The energy from theobromine lasts four to five times longer than caffeine and is totally non-addictive! So if you ever got the idea that eating a piece of dark chocolate late at night would keep you up because of the caffeine, it won’t be caffeine that keeps you up. You may find yourself feeling pretty peppy and sleep comes grudgingly, but not because of caffeine.

So there you have it. Three big myths about dark chocolate have just been busted! It does NOT cause tooth decay but rather helps to prevent it. It does NOT cause acne or pimples and, it’s energetic and non-addictive!

Incredible, edible dark chocolate! Does it get any better than this? Yup, but that’s for another article.

Alan is a charter “Boomer”, a Viet Nam veteran, grandfather of 11, resides in Florida builds and rides recumbent bikes, plays racquetball, writes, and talks to anything that does not move fast enough! The twinkle in his eye is a combination of the sun, and an active sense of humor.

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