Myths and Facts About Hot Chocolate


by Marcey Barichello

No matter if you love a nice chocolate bar or a mug of dark chocolate hot cocoa, chocolate is a major temptation for us and is one of the things we indulge on. Does this treat come with a price, though? Isn't chocolate full of caffeine, sugars, fats, and other bad things? Well, to some extent, yes, but research has had some ability to show us that chocolate can actually have some health benefits.

Here are some common myths about America's real sweetheart.

Myth: There is a lot of caffeine in chocolate.

True that chocolate can perk you up, there is actually not a whole lot of caffeine in chocolate. If you eat a 1.4 ounce chocolate bar or have a glass of chocolate milk (8 ounces), then you are only having 6 mg of caffeine. How does this compare to coffee? Well, 6 mg of caffeine is the equivalent to a cup of decaf coffee. Yes, decaf still has a touch of caffeine. Normal coffee has between 65-135 mg of caffeine, depending on the roast and amount.

Myth: Chocolate is stuffed with saturated fat and is terrible for cholesterol.

The saturated fat in milk chocolate, stearic acid, is actually a unique form of saturated fat. Studies have revealed that the saturated fat in chocolate will not raise one's level of cholesterol in the way most saturated fats will. In fact, a mug of dark chocolate hot cocoa will help you with your good cholesterol.

Myth: Chocolate contains no nutritional value.

Chocolate, especially dark chocolate, is a good way to get your daily allowance of magnesium, copper, iron, and even zinc. Chocolate also has poly phenols (antioxidants) that have been found to reduce the risk of heart disease. 

Myth: Chocolate leads to cavities.

Candy does contribute to the development of cavities but candy is not the sole perpetrator. Things we eat and drink give sugars to the bacteria living on our teeth, which produce acid and that acid leads to cavities. Remember, everything in moderation.

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