Tonique Cuisine

Dear Chocolate: be my Valentine!

Now that I know that chocolate contains cancer-fighting molecules, I feel no guilt in celebrating Valentine’s Day!

Seriously, according to Drs. Richard Beliveau and Denis Gingras,*  “dark chocolate (70% cocoa) provides the body with polyphenols that fight cancer.”

(* Read all about it in their book: Foods that fight Cancer; preventing cancer through diet. Drs. Richard Béliveau and Denis Gingras. McClelland and Stewart 2006.)

Still, we should always read carefully the list of ingredients in the chocolate we buy because cocoa butter, a natural component of chocolate, is frequently replaced by a cheaper ingredient, shortening, a hydrogenated fat that we’d better avoid.

Some chocolate will also contain huge quantities of sugar which can seriously compromise the best intention! In order to take advantage of the anti-cancer properties of chocolate, we should opt for the darker chocolate. Chocolates with less sugar and more cocoa have greater chance to prevent cancer.

This must be one of the reasons why Spa Eastman has decided to celebrate Valentine’s Day with a gastronomic dinner with chocolate accents: a “sinfully healthy dinner” as they say!

As far as I’m concerned, dark chocolate has another big advantage: I just can’t eat as much as I would of a cheaper type of chocolate! When I need a snack in the middle of the day, I grab a few chocolates of good quality (with 70% cocoa) and I’m satisfied. If it saves me from eating a full row of chocolate cookies, well, it definitly is good for my health!