For years we have been told that chocolate is bad for our children! It rots their teeth, disrupts the levels of sugar in their bodies and makes them hyper, and generally does them no good at all! In fact many schools ban it from lunch boxes and dinning halls!
And yet, chocolate was once considered to be the "Food of the Gods"! In its healthy form it can be one of the best natural foods that you can give your child. This article explores why chocolate has received such a bad press and what we, as parents, can do about it.
When I am talking "Chocolate" I am not talking about 99% of the chocolate sweets, candy bars, desserts, and other junk that our children are encouraged to eat. Not all chocolate is created equal and part of the purpose of this article is to educate on the difference between healthy chocolate and bad chocolate!
To understand a little of this we need briefly to look at the history of chocolate.
Chocolate was used as a wonder food in South America for centuries. It was highly regarded by both the Mayan and Aztec cultures for its medical and restorative properties. Cocoa beans were even used as a form of currency - in a similar way that we used precious metals such as gold and silver in the west.
It was often consumed as a drink. The Spanish conquistador, Hernan Cortes, wrote this about it in 1519:
"The divine drink builds up resistance and fights fatigue. A cup of this precious drink permits a man to walk for a whole day without food"
It was only when it arrived in Europe that the taste was changed to make it more "palatable" to the taste buds of the "civilized world". Unfortunately, this processing was the beginning of the end for the natural goodness of chocolate. The chocolate that we have come to know in our confectionery products is definitely NOT the same as the original healthy dark chocolate of the Aztecs.
So, why is chocolate so good for children?
We all know that children need their fresh fruit and vegetables. The science behind this is very strong and most parents are aware that fruit and vegetables contain a whole range of nutrients that are vital to children's health.
If your children are anything like mine you might have at least occasional issue getting them to eat their five helpings every day! We know their importance, but facing the daily battle to get them into our children can be a real struggle!
If it is a choice is between a plateful of fruit or vegetables and a small square of healthy chocolate, which one do you think might win? Opting for these squares certainly saves the battles at meal time, and ensures that the children are getting top quality nourishment in an easily digestible and enjoyable way!
It may seem remarkable, or surprising, or even unlikely, but three squares of healthy chocolate a day is all it takes to ensure that your children are getting all the natural goodness of their fruit and vegetables! Like any other caring parent, I want the very best nourishment for my children to ensure they grow as healthily as they can. If it comes from eating a special chocolate, which they thoroughly enjoy, then that is fine by me.
You don't have to take my word for it either. There is plenty of independent research available on the Internet that supports these claims. Just Google "Healthy Chocolate Science" and see what comes up.
If you are worried that eating chocolate may contribute to a rise in child obesity then don't be. Healthy chocolate actually acts to cut down on cravings for sweets and snacks and balances sugar levels within the body for several hours. Our own children have cut out their snacking almost completely since being on healthy chocolate.
It seems very strange to think that simple chocolate should be considered a "Superfood" for our children - but both the hearsay and scientific evidence is increasingly strong. If you are struggling to get high quality nutrition into your children then it is certainly worth considering!
Chocolate is a natural food and one that kids thoroughly enjoy eating. It has made a massive difference to our own children's health in a very short period of time, and I would definitely recommend it to all parents.
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Steve Cowley is the Chocolate Man! With his wife Lynn, he has been involved in the Health & Fitness industry for nearly 30 years, running fitness and martial arts academies. They now share their experiences of Xocai Healthy Chocolate with anyone interested in taking the Chocolate Path To Health And Wealth.
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