Is Dark Chocolate Healthy? Misconceptions, benefits & more! FAN REQUESTED! – Mind Over Munch

Is Dark Chocolate Healthy? Misconceptions, benefits & more! FAN REQUESTED! – Mind Over Munch


We hear it all the time in the media
“dark chocolate is healthy”, “it is a superfood”, “it has antioxidants”, but is
that true? I did a moderation rant video not too long ago where I kinda hated on
dark chocolate and a lot of you guys hated on me for it. I could sense the
confusion and ever since the unhealthy versus healthy snacks video so many of
you have requested a dark chocolate video. So here it is. These videos do take
the most time to research and concept and design and develop and edit so I
appreciate your patience as you’ve waited almost a month for this video. So before we talk
about the nutrition let’s find out how is chocolate made. Chocolate comes from cocoa beans which come from
the pods of the fruit that grows on the cacao or coco tree. Once those beans are fermented
and dried they can be used to create chocolate. The fermentation process is where some of
the flavor comes from but not all. So why do some bars taste different than others even though they’re both called dark or semi-sweet?
Flavor starts with the bean itself so were it’s grown, how it’s fermented makes a difference.
Once the dried beans are cracked into cocoa nibs and melted down you get cocoa liquor
which is the pure unrefined form of chocolate that contains both the solids, the chocolately part, and the cocoa butter which is a natural fat present in the bean. And now for a quick terminology breakdown! Cacao is made by cold pressing unroasted cocoa beans. Cocoa powder is essentially cocoa solids that remain after cocoa butter is extracted. A lot could be said about cocoa powder but pretty much if you’re using an unsweetened version that does not contain added sugar you’re good in the health
department. So there could be different amounts of cocoa solids and butter in a bar and that number which
leads to a huge difference in taste is cocoa percentage. So let’s talk about cocoa percentage. 100%
cacao is unsweetened chocolate and the only ingredient is unsweetened chocolate. I
don’t know if you’ve tasted this bar but it’s disgusting. Most people cannot really enjoy a hunk
of this it’s more commonly used in baking or cooking. So 100% is at the top
of the spectrum. As you go down the spectrum the cocoa percentage will
decrease and I’m going to show you how the sugar will increase along with the
amount of milk products. So a bar could have 25% solids and 45% cocoa butter and it would be a 70% bar or it could have 35% solids and
35% cocoa butter and it would still be a 70% bar and that is one of
the reasons that some of the bars even if they’re the same percentage are gonna
take a little bit different we don’t know the recipes. So I went to the store
and I spend a lot of time with chocolate and labels. Some of the brands will
include the cacao percentage like these. However because these bars are flavored
caramel, almond, mint, whatever we want to make sure there aren’t any variables when
we are comparing the macro nutrients so we’re going to use plain
chocolate for comparison sake. But I did want to show you that the cacao percentage is included sometimes on the design. To compare I
picked up these bars. They are all the same brand of chocolate in different
percentages. So the first thing we want to do is make sure that the serving
size is the same and all the products were comparing as we discussed in my
unhealthy versus healthy snacks video. As you can see 2 of these are noting the
serving size to be 1 section or 15 grams, 1 of them is 3 sections 38
grams, and 1 is 4 sections 45 grams. So that’s probably because the 2 that
are noting for 1 section are both baking bars and they don’t really need
to suggest a specific serving size. With chocolate bars or candy bars usually
about 40 grams is a serving so both of these have just decided to do 39 and 45.
America is stupid. I don’t know why we do that. Everyone else in the world goes per
100 grams why can’t we just be the same? Doesn’t really matter. The point is
we need these to all be the same so that we can compare accurately and we are going
to use 40 grams to compare. So let’s take a second to notice the trends. As the
cocoa percentage increases the fat and saturated fat also relatively increase.
The carbs and sugar on the other hand decrease. So higher cocoa percentage equals
more fat and less sugar and this is the important correlation that we need to
take from this comparison. A lot of people think that milk chocolate must be
higher in fat because it’s worse for you but that’s actually not the case. There
is so much naturally-occurring fat in cocoa butter that the more pure the
chocolate the more fat there’s gonna be and of course the less sugar. For fun let me also
add in a good old regular milk chocolate bar up there and it does stick with the
trend having less fat and more sugar per serving. So that brings us to
where does milk chocolate fall on the spectrum? Generally, this is how it breaks down terminology wise. Unsweetened, brute, or bitter chocolate it usually 99% or more but
the range is 85-100%. Bittersweet is the next range and that if 60-85% although the FDA only requires 35% from the cocoa bean for that label bittersweet to be slapped on it. Semisweet ranges from 35-60%. Milk only needs 10% pure chocolate and contains added cocoa butter and sugar which is why it is
most obviously a candy bar. There is very little true cocoa in this bar. White chocolate is based
on sugar, milk, and cocoa butter without the solids which is why it’s white. It’s 0% cocoa. It isn’t even really chocolate. It’s all sugar which is why it’s the best. Comment below and let me know are you #TEAMWHITE, #TEAMMILK, or #TEAMDARK So what does this all mean? How do we apply it to daily life? And when is chocolate good for me? So does chocolate provide antioxidants? Yes and no. Cacao and cocoa beans are powerhouses
full of antioxidants. But how much of these are we getting in the chocolate that we
buy and what are the nutrients? Because you know eating this, or this, or this is not the same as eating cacao beans. So this is where those percentages become important.
Chocolate as a health food has become a little bit of a fad and the companies are trying to
take advantage of it. They want you to buy their product and if they can make
it seem healthy even better. But the truth is we really need to be consuming at
least 70% dark. Some people even recommend 80% to absorb those
benefits. The dairy and sugar in the lighter chocolate, while delicious, does
lower the antioxidant content also really upping the calories and of course
the sugar. Dark chocolate really dark chocolate does not inherently have sugar
and that is important to remember is not a sweet food. The problem really is with
the word “dark”. How dark does something have to be to be considered dark
chocolate? Not that dark unfortunately. So back to these bars 41% is labeled as
milk chocolate and 55% is labeled as dark chocolate. So there doesn’t seem to
be an official rule of where the line for milk and dark is but from my
research about the 50% mark that’s where companies start to kind of turn over to
dark. Macro wise the difference between the 41, 55, and 80% is not really that
different and that’s one point that I wanna make in this video. Macro wise chocolate is still very dense
in calories and fat and it actually has even more fat the darker you get. Too many calories and fat from a healthy food can be just as damaging as too many calories and sugar
from an unhealthy food. I do want to point out the difference between the 55%
dark which is actually milk and the 80% dark. Macro wise calories are about
the same. Fat is again higher than the darker sugar is double in the lighter but also
what can’t be forgotten and this is I guess the point on the other hand is
that those antioxidants are not going to be as accessible in this lighter bar.
Here’s the next point I wanna make, dark chocolate, truly dark, will have more iron,
magnesium, phosphorus, other minerals than milk chocolate. But it is not really
enough to justify using these items these dark chocolates as sources for
those minerals. If you look at the bars you’ll see not all of the minerals
are noted but iron is noted and you’ll see that the iron levels get higher 30, 35, 40%
the darker we get. What you have to remember is that 40% although
it may be the daily required or recommended amount that is for a full 37 grams, 9
pieces of this, to get 40% of your iron. So eating a full 37 grams or 9
pieces of this would be way more than a daily recommended amount. You know
that’s a true indulgence. Most nutritionists would recommend one square
per day so not 9. Plus do you know what else is high in magnesium and iron
and phosphorus higher in fact? Pumpkin seeds But who wants to eat that
when you can eat dark chocolate? This is my point. It’s like red wine yes
it may contain some antioxidants but the antioxidant thing is mostly an excuse
for when you want to eat or drink it. Ultimately if you want to eat a piece of chocolate go ahead and eat it. The darker you can go the better. The more access you’ll have to those
antioxidants. But it still needs to be an occasional and honest indulgence and dark
chocolate cannot be a primary source for these antioxidants and minerals. I’m
really sorry if you’re a dark chocolate fanatic. I am not telling you to not eat
it. I am simply saying that some of us may need to re-evaluate the role that
dark chocolate plays in our daily diets. And just for fun really quickly I wanna
talk about some candies because this is where it really becomes a problem. You
know the dark chocolate Doves and the dark chocolate Lindts and the dark chocolate Kisses that fool us. So Hershey’s special dark has a seal, it says cocoa is a natural source of flavanol antioxidants and on the back it has a little blurb to talk about how healthy they are. But let’s compare the macronutrients to milk chocolate kisses. Look they’re pretty much the same. The same amount of
fat and only 2 grams different and sugar and as you know the darker chocolate
should have more fat and less sugar it only has 2 grams. We know that no dark chocolate would really have 21 grams of sugar. That’s added sugar. Well I looked it up because it does not
tell you the cocoa percentage on this package. Hershey’s Special Dark is only
45% dark. 45. Do you remember do you remember the spectrum this 41% bar is
labeled as milk they classified as 45% chocolate as dark. Some antics. Now Hershey’s extra dark is 60% I looked
that up but remember 60% is still not dark enough to really access those
antioxidants. So this is where it becomes a problem with these candies that call
themselves dark but they really aren’t. Same goes you know with the Dove eggs and the Lindts they’re all the same. If they say dark on them you really have to read the package you
wanna make sure you know the ingredients and you want to make sure that the sugar is low it
should be very low and the fat should be higher if it’s true dark. So don’t be
afraid of chocolate or of any food but we do need to A) be honest about our
consumption of these foods and recognize when they’re helping or hurting us so
eating chocolate to get in your potassium is not really realistic B)
educate ourselves so that we are informed enough to make those decisions
that allow us to be honest. So I hope you guys enjoy this video. Don’t forget to
give it a thumbs up if you did and if you learned something and if you could
share it on social media so that other people could learn that would be great and if you did
enjoy this type of educational video with the nutritional breakdown I have linked some
other similar videos that you might find interesting in the description box below. I’ll see you next week and remember, especially when eating chocolate, It’s all a matter of Mind Over Munch.

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