Everyone loves chocolate or almost everyone does. For many, it is a treat that is indulged in once in a while. It is made from cacao beans, which are very nutritious and good for the health. Chocolate is notoriously considered a junk food in spite of the fact that it contains cacao. It is not this ingredient but the processing it has undergone that gives it a bad rap. The addition of milk, refined sugars and other flavorings is what makes chocolate unhealthy. In its natural state, chocolate can be very beneficial. A type of chocolate, specifically dark or unprocessed chocolate, is considered a health food. This is the type of chocolate used in the preparation of chocolate smoothies.
Recipes for chocolate smoothies abound, a testament to the fact that it is loved by many people. The usual fruits paired with it are bananas, strawberries, raspberries and cherries. The more adventurous and exotic recipes try to blend pineapple or passion fruit with chocolate, although it is doubtful whether most people would find these mixtures palatable. It is best to use raw, organic chocolate for chocolate smoothies. Since this is unsweetened, there might be a temptation to use chocolate syrup or some other sweeteners that contain refined sugars. This should be avoided as much as possible. Honey is an acceptable sweetener although a better alternative would be to mix in sweet fruits like bananas. Dates can also be utilized, as their high sugar and fiber content will add natural sweetness and bulk to the drink.
A sample chocolate smoothie recipe that is energy-boosting requires a half cup of soaked cashews, four small dates, 2 tablespoons of chocolate powder and 2 bananas. The nuts are mixed with a half cup of water and blended first until they are broken down into cashew nut milk. Another half cup of water is added together with the dates, chocolate and bananas and blended until the consistency becomes very creamy and smooth.
The bananas in chocolate smoothies provide potassium that strengthens arteries, prevents strokes and keeps muscles functioning properly. The fruit also has properties that neutralize stomach acids and heal damaged stomach linings. The chocolate, on the other hand, contains powerful antioxidants that prevents cardiovascular diseases, lowers bad cholesterol, detoxifies the body, act as a natural anti-depressant and promotes well-being. It also has essential minerals such as magnesium, calcium, iron, zinc and potassium. Cocoa contains fats but they are the healthy kind that raises the level of good cholesterol in the body. Contrary to popular belief, consuming chocolate reduces appetite and will aid in weight loss.
Are chocolate smoothies good for the body? The answer is a resounding yes, as long as the cocoa used is raw. So the next time you get that chocolate craving, why not whip up a glass of this delicious drink? You will indulge your craving without the guilt and achieve all the healthful benefits at the same time.