Although loving yo’self is sweeter than chocolate, we do have to admit that every once in a while a girl needs a piece. Of chocolate. Get your minds out of the gutter, ladies (although there’s a little something for you later in this post)! And while chocolate is not only deliciously crave-able, if you eat the right kind, you can actually get a health perk from it. A Penn State University study found that people with a diet rich in dark chocolate had lower oxidation levels of bad LDL cholesterol, higher blood antioxidant levels, and 4 percent higher levels of good HDL cholesterol. So today we’re featuring two different ways for you to indulge healthfully!
Always in pursuit of the best snack bar, we recently noshed on a variety of KIND Plus bars. While all of the KIND flavors were good, this time of year we were obviously drawn to the chocolate varieties, which included Peanut Butter Dark Chocolate (you can never go wrong there, in our opinion) and Dark Chocolate Cherry Cashew. Both have 180 calories in the normal sizes (minis are cute, smaller versions of the bar with less than 120 calories), are all-natural, are gluten/wheat free, include fiber and have no GMO or trans fats. Oh, and they taste DELICIOUS. Just like dessert. They’re not overly sweet, but include enough chocolate and nuts to make you feel like you’re cheating a bit. Not to mention that they really taste natural—none of that chalky aftertaste so many protein bars have. We recommend forgoing the box of chocolates this year and getting a few of these for your honey instead!
Now this is just straight-up chocolate—with a twist. When we first learned about MacaSure Chocolat, I immediately thought about Johnny Depp in this delicious movie. Then I thought of this movie that references Chocolat. Then I started craving chocolate, Johnny Depp and Paul Rudd. Since the last two are out of reach, I tried MacaSure, which is a good-quality 70 percent cocoa dark chocolate with a bit of a natural green aftertaste. I know “green” isn’t a taste, but that’s the only way I can really explain it. And that green comes from maca, a so-called superfood that is said to increase energy while improving our ability to handle stress. It’s also said to control cortisol levels, promote restful sleep, improve immunity and enhance mental clarity. It’s also a bit like—and here’s where the V-Day part comes into play—Viagra, improving sexual function and—ahem—stamina. Now, all my hormones are already a bit in crazy town as they adjust to going off the pill, so it’s hard for me to pinpoint MacaSure as the exact reason for my recent increased awareness in knockin’-the-boots (not to mention that the placebo effect could be at play, too), but let me just leave it at this: I certainly don’t need my hubs eating the stuff. I’d never get eight hours of sleep again!
Are you a chocoholic? Tell us about it! —Jenn