Can you guess why this today is a very important day. No idea? Today is . . .
World Chocolate Day, also known as International Chocolate Day!
What’s the history of chocolate?
Chocolate was first introduced to Europe in the mid-16th Century (“History of Chocolate,” 2020). But chocolate consumption actually goes back about 4,000 years – the ancient Olmec people of Latin America drank a form of hot chocolate and used it as a medicine (Kim, 2019). When the European explorers arrived in South American Cacao beans became a very valuable trade commodity. Cacao beans are the most raw form of what eventually becomes chocolate.
Back to today…
How do we celebrate this awesome World Chocolate Day?
No prizes for the correct answer. Yes, celebrate by consuming (even more) chocolate. What’s your favourite chocolate? Cadbury dairy milk, Whittakers fruit and nut, Queen Anne boxed chocolates or an Italian Ferrero Rocher? What about the pricey but definitely worth it handmade Belgian or Swiss chocolate? Whatever your preference just enjoy…
Why not try a different variety of chocolate today. It’s a great idea – you never know what you’re missing, till you try it for yourself!
Is Chocolate Good for Us?
Wait a minute! Isn’t overindulgence in chocolate not exactly good for our waistline and overall health? What does the science say. Milk chocolate, seemingly the most popular and affordable type of chocolate in the world, gives us beneficial protein and calcium. But milk chocolate is often very high in sugar, which has been linked to tooth decay, diabetes, cardio-vascular ailments and other health issues. So, it seems that we need to curb our over-indulgence in milk chocolate.
What about dark chocolate?
Dark chocolate has been touted as a healthier chocolate. The reason..its main ingredient cocoa has biologically active phenolic compounds, which Nordqvist (2018) says may benefit us by:
• lowering cholesterol levels
• preventing cognitive decline
• reducing the risk of cardiovascular problems
Takeaway: Based on what is known, it seems that eating high cocoa content dark chocolate that is low in sugar is beneficial, especially for those of us who enjoy chocolate frequently.
How is Chocolate Made?
Curious about how chocolate is made? Watch this very interesting video while savouring your chocolate!
History of chocolate. (2020, July 5, 08:20). In Wikipedia. Retrieved July 7, 2020, from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_chocolate
JillWellington. (Photographer). (n.d.). Chocolates [Photograph]. Retrieved from https://pixabay.com/photos/valentine-s-day-chocolates-candy-2057745/
Kim, J. (2019, October 16). A brief history of chocolate [Web log post]. Retrieved from https://www.chocolate.org/blogs/chocolate-blog/a-brief-history-of-chocolate
Nordqvist, J. (2018, July 17). Health benefits and risks of chocolate. Retrieved July 7, 2020, from Medical News Today website: https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/270272
Leonard Yeo, posted by Jonathan Moake