Chocolate is enduring, whether it comes in the form of a milk chocolate candy bar by the supermarket checkout counter or the fancy bars with the cacao levels. And who hasn't dreamed of having a chocolate fountain at their wedding?
We know chocolate is full of antioxidants, yet a lot of the chocolate we eat is overshadowed by milk, sugar, high-fructose corn syrup, and other assorted ingredients.
Diametrically opposed sides: milk chocolate has the taste level we expect, but fancier chocolate is closer to what we need to get the health benefits. When we say we want chocolate, do we want taste or health? And can we have both?
Having visited Choco-Musée Érico in Quebec City, I have sampled 100% cacao chocolate: pure chocolate with no sugar. Very healthy but non-existent sweetness. Once you've had 100% cacao, 75% cacao is a lot sweeter than you think.
If your diet is highly processed milk chocolate bars, getting up to 60% and 72% cacao will take a degree of adjustment. If you are already in that club, you're in a good spot. But even if you already eat 60%, 72%, or 86% cacao, you might find that a square of the fancy chocolate isn't fulfilling enough.
The truth about chocolate is if you let a little go a long way, your body will be happy. Whether your taste buds can adjust is up to you. But you should know that even a little bit of chocolate packs a punch on the numbers.
Here is a breakdown of a very well-known brand of fancy chocolate at 72% cacao.:
Fancy 72% cacao chocolate
|Category||1 square||3 squares||Whole bar|
|Calories from Fat||50||150||375|
|Whole bar based on about 2.5 servings and a serving size of 3 squares|
Other notes: 3 squares of the chocolate contain 51% of the daily value (DV) for saturated fat. So a whole bar would provide 127% of the DV for saturated fat. As for fat, 3 squares provides 26% of the DV, and the whole bar has 65% of the DV. 3 squares does provide 15% of the DV for iron, a whole bar has 38% of the DV.