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Ahhh… the taste of chocolate – as winter gets colder, and the daily stress is piling up, it becomes all the more enticing.
“But…” the thought of extra tummy fat, my pre diabetic sugar level, and the difficulty of losing weight after each holiday season…
I don’t want to guilt trip myself or you, since we are all human, and we all need to celebrate occasionally, and indulge in moderation. What kind of holiday would it be without chocolate?!
As a chocolate lover, I used to chew a piece of chocolate as soon as I put it in my mouth. The flavor lingered on after it was swallowed, which led to 2nd and 3rd pieces… This habit of eating was also for meals and snacks, which led to ingesting more calories than needed and many months’ of dieting to lose weight.
Last summer, I did accomplish losing eight pounds without completely depriving myself of chocolate bars. Here are two “secrets” I am sharing with you:
Instead of chewing a piece of chocolate, I put a piece on top of my tongue, close my mouth, and let it melt. Since melting takes longer than chewing, my taste buds get a longer time to enjoy the flavor, while the chocolate taste slowly permeates in my mouth. My taste buds got “tricked” into the same amount of enjoyment without my eating more pieces to prolong the taste. I ate less chocolate and got the same satisfaction.
Before I was trying to lose weight, I ate all brands of chocolate, all very smooth and refined, and I thought that was the only way chocolate was supposed to be.
Then a friend of mine who succeeded in losing 30 lbs in six months (who also loves chocolate) sent me this brand of chocolate: “Taza Chocolate – Mexican style stone ground, organic and direct trade”. Each round package has two round discs, with 190 calories per disc. Each disc can be cut into eight small pieces, each small piece is around 24 calories ONLY!
DISCLAIMER: I am NOT paid, in any fashion, by any brands of chocolate mentioned here.
Not only did the packaging look crude, it tasted crude too, AT FIRST. My initial reaction was: What the heck is this? How crude, unrefined, and different! The sugar was so granular inside the chocolate, it felt like sand grains in my mouth. The only part I liked was the “direct trade”. I frankly was trying to finish it entirely to support this “charity”. I am glad I gave this “new kid on the block” more time for me to get used to, because this “interrupter” had more lasting power for the palette with fewest calories than any other chocolates.
The more I tried it, the more I liked it, exactly because it was less processed, original in taste, and satisfying in that regard. It is indeed an acquired taste, so be patient, you WILL like it. After all that 24-calorie, little triangle piece melts away in my mouth, I finish the treat with feeling the granulated sugar on my tongue, which replaces the longing for more chocolate taste. Having granulated sugar instead of chocolate to close the treat puts a full stop to wanting more chocolate pieces afterwards (but I admit I have to remind myself NOT to go for a 2nd piece, as my new habit for treat moderation.)
“Taza Chocolate – Mexican style stone ground, organic and direct trade” comes in different flavors, at a good price, at Whole Foods or through Amazon.
– ⅓ cup almond butter
– 2 tablespoons butter
– 2 squares chopped up 85% dark chocolate
– 1 tablespoon cocoa powder (no sugar)
– 1 teaspoon monk fruit sugar (zero calorie, diabetic safe)
– 2 teaspoons slivered almonds
– Melt butter, mix together all ingredients, tablespoon out onto parchment paper and freeze for 10 minutes or so, until it is hardened. Break or slice into bite size pieces.
– Eat your piece as soon as it is out of the freezer, since it melts fast! Keep the rest in the freezer.
– I hope these holiday chocolate gifts from me to you will make your holidays sweet AND healthy!
If your family is like mine, with Republicans and Democrats, or any other flavors of politics, and you do want a happy reunion, this blog or podcast gives you many tips for honest exchange of political views within a family, and even become genuinely closer to each other.
This 30 seconds of podcast or blog on “us vs. the problem, not us vs. them” will help too.
Have a very chocolatey 🍫 Christmas 🎄, and
a New Year 🎆 without extra weight!
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