Dark Chocolate – the Healthy Snack Bar
September 15 darkchocolate, fitness, health, nutrition, superfood Comment
The topic of health is front and center in everyone’s mind these days and making positive lifestyle changes affects all aspects of how we spend our time. We schedule our workouts, plan out healthy meals, pack our lunches for work, fill and empty our water bottle regularly, and make sure that we have good snacks to keep us fueled during the day.
Maintaining a healthy lifestyle requires some effort. Everyone develops their own individual routines and strategies that work best for them. Solid nutrition comes from the combination of fresh ingredients and a balanced lifestyle. Consuming only those foods that are ‘good for you’ and fall under the ‘fresh and healthy’ category can be tricky. Once in a while we need a healthy treat that keeps us happy and allows us to feel a bit indulgent. K’ul Chocolate can satisfy a sweet tooth and keep the guilt at bay.
A day of work can be both physically and mentally taxing. Add in workouts, a walk or bike ride after dinner, a night out dancing, a weekend of yard work, a game of pick-up basketball and you get the idea. Constantly on the move, we seek optimal nutrition to continually fuel our bodies and maintain our maximum health. Meal planning and healthy snacking is more important than ever now that it has become common knowledge to eat smaller portions more frequently throughout the day in order to speed up your metabolism. Everywhere we turn we find the siren call of salty snacks, aisles of candy bars and those ubiquitous protein bars touted for your health that are anything but tasty or nutritious. This is why we designed K’ul Chocolate to be easily incorporated as a healthy snack, post-workout pick-me-up or satisfying late-night treat.
Now, let’s rethink what our culture has come to consider as chocolate. Forget Hershey bars, and instead, think dark chocolate, deep and rich in flavor, and best of all, surprisingly laden with incredible nutritional benefits that fit firmly in to your healthy lifestyle regimen. First off, dark chocolate is a low glycemic food with a glycemic index rating of 23. That means your body metabolizes this superfood more steadily than high glycemic foods – resulting in longer lasting and more sustainable energy. Dark chocolate is also rich in flavonoids that help repair cellular damage caused by environmental toxins. The antioxidants found in dark chocolate help our cellular structure resist damage caused by free radicals. More importantly, flavanols, the components naturally found in cacao, the base ingredient of all chocolate, have been determined by scientific research to help support cardio-vascular systems through decreasing inflammation. A reduction of inflammatory response in the body has been shown to bring down cholesterol numbers, lower blood pressure and increase oxygen flow. The fat content of chocolate, while not optimal by any means, does contain oleic acid, a heart-healthy mono-saturated fat that can also be found in olive oil. New studies on the effects of dark chocolate and the health of our gut biome show that bacteria found in our intestinal tract breaks down and ferments the nutritional components of dark chocolate, turning them in to anti-inflammatory compounds that greatly benefit our gut health. The rise in the use of processed foods has been proven to deplete our digestive system of beneficial bacteria necessary for good health. Increasingly, scientists are finding a great correlation between the health of our digestive system, and the overall well-being that we strive to achieve, including a little known connection between the health of our gut and proper brain function. Overall, the health benefits of dark chocolate have also been found to increase when combined with other anti-oxidants.
Chocolate also contains other intense plant "chemicals," such as anandamide, taken from the Sanskrit word for "bliss”. Anandamide acts as a neurotransmitter in the brain and temporarily reduces or blocks feelings of pain and anxiety. The caffeine and theobromine in chocolate have been shown to produce higher levels of physical energy and mental alertness, giving us a sense of clarity and increased emotional wellness upon consumption.
Science and taste have come together in K’ul Chocolate, creating a powerful blend of finely crafted, artisan dark chocolate mixed with healthy whole foods to create chocolate and energy bars like none other. K’ul Chocolate can be incorporated as part of your daily eating and exercise routine, a snack between meals, a superfood bar before or after your workout, a bite of indulgence, a healthy mixture of pleasure with all the nutrition.