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02. 11. 2009

Happy Valentine's Day! Dark chocolate is good for you!

250px-Chocolate.jpg

What with Saturday being Valentine's Day and all, here's a reminder that the perfect healthful gifts for your (human) sweeties are (confectionery) sweeties--as long as the goodies are made with dark chocolate.

Dark chocolate is, um, chock full of natural substances called flavonoids. Flavonoids are terrific for the heart, and dark chocolate has more of them than any other food, even splendid fruits like apples.

Research to date has shown that dark chocolate benefits cholesterol, arteries, and blood pressure.
If you don't believe me, believe WebMD, the venerable 'Net source of medical advice. The WebMD summaries of research reporting these fine findings (and some fun facts) are here and here

And ignore the message in that photo (above). Remember that we're talking dark chocolate, not wimpy milk chocolate. Milk, it turns out, interferes with chocolate's good health effects. And white chocolate is basically just greasy cocoa butter. Ick.

Also remember, sadly: In addition to good-guy flavonoids, chocolate is also full of bad-guy calories.

So better not give the customary Valentine's Day full box of chocolates. Instead, what about one perfect homemade truffle? Truffles are really easy to concoct, and you can find scads of instructions by Googling recipe:truffle. Here's one that seems appropriate for us, from the site Cooking for Engineers.

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