Tag Archives: chocolate consumption

Trick or Treat – How Much Chocolate Do We Eat?

Since this is the biggest day for chocolate consumption in the year, I thought it might be interesting to check into it.

Do you know how much chocolate the average American eats in a year? One pound? Ten pounds?

As a matter of fact we eat an average of a pound of chocolate a month, so, by a process of rapid calculation, 12 pounds in a year.

chocolate

According to WebMD’s chocolate quiz “We each eat close to a dozen pounds of chocolate per year. And most of that is milk chocolate. More than 90 percent of Americans say they prefer milk chocolate over dark or white.

“It takes a long time to work off all that chocolate. It would take a 130-pound woman about four days and nights (95 hours) of brisk walking to burn off those calories!”

And I know you have heard that chocolate has caffeine in it, but how much? WebMD says,

“You’d need to eat 14 regular-sized (1.5 oz) bars of milk chocolate to get the same caffeine as you’d find in a 8-ounce cup of coffee! That would have about 3,000 calories and more than 300 grams of sugar — compared to only about two calories in black coffee.

“Dark chocolate does have more caffeine than milk chocolate. Even then, it would take four bars to give you the same buzz as one cup of regular Joe.”

So, enjoy the evening, but if you are going out with your little trick or treater, keep in mind how much walking is required to burn off those calories.

Tonya

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Filed under calorie counting, calories, chocolate, chocolate cravings, Exercise, exercise benefits, Halloween, trick or treat

Why Should I Eat More Dark Chocolate?

With Valentine’s Day fast approaching, I thought it worth revisiting this post I did on eating more dark chocolate.

Enjoy!

Tony

One Regular Guy Writing about Food, Exercise and Living Past 100

Before starting, let me clarify that the word ‘more’ in the header assumes you are eating little or no dark chocolate at present because here in the U.S. we primarily eat milk chocolate. How much? Good question. Some 71 percent of the chocolate we eat is milk chocolate. And, how much total?

chocrose.11130246_std

The World Atlas of Chocolate puts the U.S. in 11th place worldwide in per capita chocolate consumption with a paltry 11.5 pounds per year. Switzerland is in first place with more than double that total.

As far as a definition of dark chocolate goes, the U.S. has no fixed percentage of cocoa content to define dark chocolate. In practice, however, it seems that 70 percent cocoa solids qualifies as dark chocolate.

But why eat more dark chocolate? Experience L!fe says, “Sure, chocolate’s exquisitely decadent. But its primary ingredient, cocoa, has triple the antioxidants of green tea, helps reduce…

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Filed under dark chocolate, Valentine's Day

How Does Your Money Management Compare with Your Weight Management?

Are you overweight, but manage your money well? Gee, if you could only handle your diet as well as you handle your money. What has one got to do with the other? Perhaps more than you think. Wouldn’t it be nice to transfer your financial skills to your eating habits?

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Do you have financial discipline? You want the new iPad, but it costs at least $499. It would be great fun to play with and explore all the fun stuff that you have seen demonstrated on TV. But, if you buy it, you will fall short of the rent money this month. And it would be dangerous to push your plastic at this time. So, no can do. That’s good fiscal discipline.

How about indulging in some delicious chocolate tonight while watching the tube? Nothing helps mellow you out so much as some nice chocolate. Somehow romantic movies are even moreso when you are enjoying some nice chocolate. Why not?

Are you a person who passes on the iPad, but eats the chocolate? Sure, it tastes great. But, the principle is the same. You need to be able to ‘afford’ the chocolate just as you need the $499 to buy the iPad. Good physical discipline works just like good fiscal discipline.

Keeping track of your calories is the first step. You keep track of your income vs your expenses. It’s the same principle. Don’t eat what you can’t pay for either in abstinence elsewhere or burning off in the gym or the health club.

In each instance, it is your call. Use that same clear mental focus that you do in money matters to assist you in your eating.

Last, but not least, make sure you get your body moving. too. Eating intelligently is half the battle of weight control. You need to exercise regularly to keep your body healthy. Eat less; move more; live longer. Words to live by.

Tony

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Filed under Weight, weight control

Why Should I Eat More Dark Chocolate?

With Valentine’s Day a week away, it seemed timely to talk about chocolate. Dark chocolate.

Before starting, let me clarify that the word ‘more’ in the header assumes you are eating little or no dark chocolate at present because here in the U.S. we primarily eat milk chocolate. How much? Good question. Some 71 percent of the chocolate we eat is milk chocolate. And, how much total?

chocrose.11130246_std

The World Atlas of Chocolate puts the U.S. in 11th place worldwide in per capita chocolate consumption with a paltry 11.5 pounds per year. Switzerland is in first place with more than double that total.

As far as a definition of dark chocolate goes, the U.S. has no fixed percentage of cocoa content to define dark chocolate. In practice, however, it seems that 70 percent cocoa solids qualifies as dark chocolate.

But why eat more dark chocolate? Experience L!fe says, “Sure, chocolate’s exquisitely decadent. But its primary ingredient, cocoa, has triple the antioxidants of green tea, helps reduce cholesterol and blood pressure and improves insulin sensitivity.”

They quote Alice Medrich on it. “Alice Medrich, who is credited with bringing the chocolate truffle to the United States in the 1970s, says that when you taste chocolate without all the sugar, you become aware of its deep, earthy, nutty, and fruity flavors. She compares chocolate to wine and says that, like grapes, chocolate has a terroir that reflects the taste of the soil and climate where it’s grown.

“’Sometimes you’ll get some tropical fruit flavors or citrus flavors or cherry or even little hints of orange or coconut,’ says Medrich, author of the cookbook Seriously Bitter Sweet. ‘There are hundreds of flavor components in chocolate, and they can go to the sweet or the savory really easily.'”

FITDAY offers several benefits of dark chocolate, including:
Good for your heart. “Studies show that eating a small amount of dark chocolate two or three times each week can help lower your blood pressure. Dark chocolate improves blood flow and may help prevent the formation of blood clots. Eating dark chocolate may also prevent arteriosclerosis.

Good for your brain. Dark chocolate increases blood flow to the brain as well as to the heart, so it can help improve cognitive function. Dark chocolate also helps reduce your risk of stroke.

Dark chocolate also contains several chemical compounds that have a positive effect on your mood and cognitive health. Chocolate contains phenylethylamine (PEA), the same chemical your brain creates when you feel like you’re falling in love. PEA encourages your brain to release endorphins, so eating dark chocolate will make you feel happier.

Dark chocolate contains caffeine, a mild stimulant. However, dark chocolate contains much less caffeine than coffee. A standard 1.5 ounce bar of dark chocolate contains 27 mg of caffeine, compared to the 200 mg found in an eight ounce cup of coffee.

Helps control blood sugar. “The flavonoids in dark chocolate also help reduce insulin resistance by helping your cells to function normally and regain the ability to use your body’s insulin efficiently. Dark chocolate also has a low glycemic index, meaning it won’t cause huge spikes in blood sugar levels.

Dark chocolate contains theobromine which helps to harden tooth enamel, so unlike most sweets it lowers your risk of cavities. Theobromine also can help to suppress coughing.

The final positive from FITDAY is dark chocolate’s vitamin and mineral content. “The copper and potassium in dark chocolate help prevent against stroke and cardiovascular ailments. The iron in chocolate protects against iron deficiency anemia, and the magnesium in chocolate helps prevent type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure and heart disease.”

Authority Nutrition
offers the following: “If you buy quality dark chocolate with a high cocoa content, then it is actually quite nutritious.

It contains a decent amount of soluble fiber and is loaded with minerals.
A 100 gram (about 4 ounces) bar of dark chocolate with 70-85% cocoa contains:
• 11 grams of fiber.
• 67% of the RDA for Iron.
• 58% of the RDA for Magnesium.
• 89% of the RDA for Copper.
• 98% of the RDA for Manganese.
• It also has plenty of potassium, phosphorus, zinc and selenium.

Aren’t we all ready for some good news on cholesterol? Well, Authority Nutrition says, “Dark chocolate improves several important risk factors for disease. It lowers the susceptibility of LDL to oxidative damage while increasing HDL and improving insulin sensitivity.”

In case you don’t remember, HDL is the good cholesterol and LDL is the bad. You want higher HDL numbers and lower LDL ones.

Lastly, Authority Nutrition says that “Studies show that the flavanols from cocoa can improve blood flow to the skin and protect it against sun-induced damage.”

I must confess that I had never heard dark chocolate could protect your skin from the sun, but as a skin cancer victim, I am very happy to learn it.

While I would like you to include dark chocolate in your diet, I hope that you know we are talking about reasonable amounts here. You don’t need to eat more than a couple of ounces a day to get the benefits mentioned above.

Tony

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Filed under antioxidants, blood pressure, chocolate, cholesterol, dark chocolate, Weight, weight control, weight loss

Trick or Treat – How Much Chocolate Do We Eat?

Since this is the biggest day for chocolate consumption in the year, I thought it would be worthwhile to check into it.

Do you know how much chocolate the average American eats in a year? One pound? Ten pounds?

As a matter of fact we eat an average of a pound of chocolate a month, so 12 pounds in a year.

chocolate

According to WebMD’s chocolate quiz “We each eat close to a dozen pounds of chocolate per year. And most of that is milk chocolate. More than 90% of Americans say they prefer milk chocolate over dark or white.

“It takes a long time to work off all that chocolate. It would take a 130-pound woman about four days and nights (95 hours) of brisk walking to burn off those calories!”

And I know you have heard that chocolate has caffeine in it, but how much? WebMD says,

“You’d need to eat 14 regular-sized (1.5 oz) bars of  milk chocolate to get the same caffeine as you’d find in a 8-ounce cup of coffee! That would have about  3,000 calories and more than 300 grams of sugar — compared to only about two calories in black coffee.

“Dark chocolate does have more caffeine than milk chocolate. Even then, it would take four bars to give you the same buzz as one cup of regular Joe.”

So, enjoy the evening, but if you are going out with your little trick or treater, keep in mind how much walking is required to burn off those calories.

Tony

3 Comments

Filed under caffeine, calories, chocolate, dark chocolate, Halloween, health, healthy eating, healthy living, snack foods, Snacking, trick or treat, walking, Weight

Should I Eat Less Chocolate? Costco Love Crunch

Regular readers know that I ride my bike an average of 20 miles a day which covers a multitude of sins at the table. A 20 mile bike ride burns over 1000 calories a day, or about 50 percent more than the 2000 I need to maintain my 150 pound body weight.

Because of that 1000 calorie ‘buffer’ until recently I had been enjoying a Hershey’s with Almonds bar most evenings.

Here is the nutrition breakdown for that Hershey’s with Almonds bar:
Calories 210
Total Fat 14 grams
Saturated Fat 6 grams
Cholesterol 10 mg
Sodium 25 mg
Carbs 21 grams
Sugar 19 grams
Fiber 2 grams
Protein 4 grams

As you can see, this isn’t horrible as far as nutrition is concerned, particularly in view of the 1000 calorie buffer. But, six grams of saturated fat isn’t great and the 19 grams of sugar amounts to almost 5 teaspoons full (4.2 grams/tsp).
love-crunch1
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Filed under arterial plaque, arteries, biking, calories, cardio exercise, cholesterol, Exercise, fat, granola, heart, Weight