Who doesn’t love chocolate? It’s one of the most popular ways to treat your sweet tooth and it is also the vice for many chocolate lovers who are trying to live a healthier lifestyle.
But did you know there are healthy ways to satisfy your chocolate craving?
While eating a Kit Kat bar may be unhealthy, foods that contain cocoa beans are high in essential nutrients. Eating unprocessed cocoa beans, also known as cacoa, are even more nutritious than the average dark chocolate bar. If you’re a chocolate lover, try these healthy foods to incorporate into your diet to harbor the benefits of cocoa.
Did you know cacoa powder contain 40 times the antioxidants of blueberries? Cacoa powder is the unprocessed version of the cocoa you might find in the baking isle. Since the beans are less processed, they contain more of the natural nutrients found in the cocoa bean. Cacoa powder is one of the highest plant-based sources of iron and is full of magnesium.
The best way to utilize this super food in your diet is by making hot cocoa, adding it to a smoothie, or making raw desserts.
Cacoa nibs are the less processed version of dark chocolate. While they tend to be less sweet and more bitter, cacoa nibs still have that chocolate flavor while offering dietary fiber. Cacoa has the ability to improve your mood almost instantly by releasing endorphins that can trigger emotions such as euphoria.
Cacoa nibs can be eaten by themselves, added in trail mix, or on top of almost anything to gain the health benefits.
If you’re not sold on these unprocessed versions of the cocoa bean, eating a good quality chocolate bar will suffice. Dark chocolate contains processed cocoa beans, meaning it still contains the various nutrients that this bean harbors. A dark chocolate bar is rich in fiber, iron, magnesium, copper, manganese and a few other minerals. Dark chocolate also is high in antioxidants and has proven to reduce the risk of various diseases.
Chocolate can be a healthy alternative to your favorite decadent treats. By incorporating cacoa powder, cacoa nibs, and dark chocolate into your diet, you can reap the benefits that cocoa beans possess. We hope you treat yourself with these chocolaty treats!