Is Chocolate good or bad for you?

After reading this you may just feel a little less guilty about your chocolate indulgence.

Of course there are those who will point out that chocolate is loaded with fat, sugar, and caffeine. It's true that cocoa butter, the main source of fat (besides milk) in chocolate, is composed of both saturated and unsaturated fats, but most of this, about 75%, is in the form of oleic and stearic acids. Diets rich in these acids have been shown to lower cholesterol levels. While 25% of the fat in chocolate is "the bad kind," the amount of good fat in chocolate seems to counteract the bad fat. And, as with all chocolates, the darker they are the less room there is for things like cocoa butter, and the more room for that healthy antioxidant-packed cocoa.

What about the sugar content in chocolate? Well, that is not so good I have to admit. Sadly there is nothing good about it, really. But keep in mind that a strong dark chocolate bar might have ten to fifteen grams of sugar, which is still less than the 22 grams in your glass of orange juice and the 29 grams in your carton of yoghurt, both of which are considered "good" for you. Ha ha. Get that!!

To those who nag on about how bad the caffeine in chocolate is for you I say this, an average bar contains about 27 mg, about half what you'd find in a cola and a third what you'd find in a cup of coffee. Besides which, studies have shown that having some, but less than 200 mg of caffeine a day, might actually be good for you.

The bottom line in all of this is that it might be said that indulging in a small amount of dark chocolate might be the perfect recipe for life - satisfying your sweet tooth while treating your body to the many health benefits of chocolate. So next time you're craving something sweet, reach for the dark chocolate because it is guilt free!!

Date: 07/02/2011