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  • Lindsey, EDRD

Chocolate Talk

Well last weekend sure went by quickly.

The handful of red-wrapped presents are from Santa. The brown paper ones are from mom and dad. I don't need my kids thinking all this is from some random bearded guy.

(Can you spot the Fourth of July decoration Sabrina insisted on putting on the tree?)

As for gifts, I was equally as excited to give this to my husband as he was to receive it- our favorite restaurant in NYC has a cookbook. SO. GOOD.

So far the marble run has been the toy the kids have played with the most, though there is a massive Lego set they've been waiting on me to help them build. You know, because I'm not stepping on enough Legos throughout the house...hrrrrrrmmmm.

All in all we had a nice lazy weekend, but now I'm all for stashing the Christmas stuff and getting the house clean & cleared for the new year.

I think I love my white winter decor just as much as the Christmas stuff.

I gave myself a white mani too. FRESH EVERYTHING FOR 2021!

I went to Target with the boys (they had some dollars burning holes in their pockets) and I picked up a bunch of new dark chocolate bars for myself too. Let's talk about that, mmk? I am 100% for dark chocolate.

Reason #1: It tastes delicious.

Reason #2: It is much lower in sugar than regular chocolate and candy.

Reason #3: It can have just as many antioxidants as fruits.

Reason #4: Some research indicates a relationship between ~6 grams of dark chocolate daily and reduced risk of heart disease.

These are the four fancy-ish bars I bought. For comparison's sake, I'm going to consider Hershey's Special Dark chocolate the most basic dark chocolate option.

30 grams is about 1 ounce- for a visual, think of a domino.

TASTE aside, let's take a peek. Interesting how Hershey's has the lowest fat and second lowest calories, but BY FAR the most sugar. Hershey's doesn't say on the packaging or on their website what percentage of actual cocoa goes into the bar. Generally the higher the percentage of cocoa solids, the less sugar. Dark chocolate ranges from 50-90% cocoa solids, whereas milk chocolate has 10-50%. I personally love dark chocolate in the 80% cocoa solid range, but 90% is just a little too bitter for me.

Lily's dark chocolate sticks out a bit because of its zero added sugars. Let's look a bit deeper here at the label.

The second ingredient here is erythritol, a sugar alcohol. Now there's nothing "wrong" with sugar alcohols- they're sweet tasting non-digestible substances. They're used in the majority of sugar-free candies. The downside for a lot of people is that 1. they can leave a slightly funky after taste, and 2. because they're non digestible, too much will give you diarrhea. Lily's also uses stevia for sweetening.

Another thing to note with the Lily's is that they add inulin- a type of fiber. They don't just add a teeny bit either- a whopping 8 grams per serving (that's the equivalent fiber content of a half cup of lentils). That's not a bad thing, but all signs point to this NOT BEING SOMETHING YOU WANT TO EAT TOO MUCH OF, unless you're well stocked up on toilet paper. This being 2020, that is doubtful.

The Ghirardelli, Equal Exchange, and Endangered Species are all pretty equivalent, nutritionally-speaking.

Let's talk about taste. The Lily's, while delicious-as-you're-chewing, does give me that bit of sugar alcohol aftertaste. I do not have the slightest of a refined palate, and so I found the Equal Exchange, the Endangered Species, and the Ghirardelli all comparable. When price is factored in, Ghirardelli is the more affordable option.

All in all, I love my dark chocolate and will continue to have some every day. Yep, daily! I usually have half an ounce after my lunch and another half an ounce or whole ounce after dinner. For me it helps keep sugar cravings away, and since it's so rich-tasting, a small piece satisfies. The only thing I have to be careful about is keeping it out of reach of the kids- they know it's "mommy's chocolate" and I need to keep it that way!


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