All of us experience one food addiction or another. Chocolate happens to be one of the most loved, adored and craved food item. But as much as we love it we are usually worried about the weight that we keep putting on due our chocolate addiction. Since this is a difficulty faced by most of us, we are here to help you satisfy your love for chocolate in a healthy way.
You might hear bad things from the people around you for being addicted to chocolate. They may tell you to drop this “bad habit” if you want to get healthy and do not want to get “chocolate-wasted.”
In fact, chocolate actually proves beneficial to your overall health, if you learn to manage your intake. Learn about the ways in which you can achieve healthy chocoholism. Furthermore, five of our favorite healthy chocolate recipes are also included to help you satisfy your chocolate craving so you can remain happy and healthy.
Becoming a Healthy Chocoholic: Identify Your Addiction
As you know, eating chocolate helps release endorphins which create a mood high and research shows that the body develops a physical dependency for experiencing this feeling. The desire to consume chocolate again and again under any circumstances is definitely an addiction to chocolate.
The following symptoms indicate a chocolate addiction:
- First, your mouth waters in the presence of chocolate if there is still some of it in the refrigerator and the mere thought of it alone makes you salivate.
- You feel a need to eat chocolate at particular times of the day for instance, after eating lunch or dinner.
- Frustration seeps in when you are denied chocolate for some time and instantly feel happy if you finally have some.
- Furthermore, you keep promising yourself to quit but it is too irresistible for you.
- You go out of your way to fulfill your need for having it and do not feel normal or sane until you eat a good quantity of it.
- Headaches occur after consuming it but you ignore all the symptoms of over-dosing and still continue eating it.
- Feeling low and lacking the energy to do any important tasks due to the extra intake of sugar in the form of chocolate which may cause a sugar crash. Knowing this and still continuing with having chocolate is definitely
a sign of addiction.
- If you lie about your habit of eating too many chocolates or go as far as hiding it from your loved ones to cover up the shame, you might have to face that you are addicted.
- The change in your skin complexion due to unhealthy eating habits and too much sugar may also be considered a symptom.
- Finally, if you do not even care about spending too much on the imported European Chocolate you probably already know that you’re addicted.
After realizing that you are addicted to chocolate you should figure out what it is that has caused this addiction.
Becoming a Healthy Chocoholic: Figure Out the Cause
There are plenty of possibilities going on in the back of your head that might be triggering your need for having chocolate and causing this addiction.
The following steps identify the cause:
- Emotional issues such as stress, depression, anxiousness, anger about some unresolved issues, sadness etc. may force you to grab a bar of chocolate to help you feel better.
- If you are hungry and do not have anything to eat and since chocolate is handy, you start chomping on it without giving it any second thoughts.
- Or, if you are on a diet and feel deprived, you may find comfort in a bar of chocolate.
- Chocolate is so mouth-watering and its images are totally irresistible. When you come across an advertisement etc. you are simply unable to hold back.
- You have chocolates just to kill your boredom and feel happy by turning on the endorphins. You may even chomp on the bar mindlessly while watching TV.
Becoming a Healthy Chocoholic: Solve the Root Cause
By identifying your addiction and the cause behind it, you can go to the next phase of overcoming your unhealthy habits to eliminate them. Unless medically recommended you do not need to completely boycott chocolate, you just have to limit it.
The following steps help control cravings:
- Decide that you want to make a change and then stick to your decision of staying away and/or avoiding the craving to every extent.
- You can find healthy alternatives for the fulfillment of your craving such as chocolate smoothies, vegan hot chocolate, chocolate avocado pudding etc. Healthy chocolate options will help with your desire and wouldn’t cause any problems. See recipes below!
- Start by practicing portion control, limit the amount of the chocolate you eat and also replace your usual chocolate with dark chocolate.
- Additionally, avoid going through the chocolate sections in the supermarket to avoid bringing chocolate home.
- You can use aromatherapy to boost your senses. Choose your favorite scents to help you keep your mind off chocolate.
- Find a past time that will help overcome your procrastination and doesn’t make you feel frustrated. Try meditation, yoga or go for a walk. These healthy habits will help you to control your urge for chocolate.
- Do not stock up on the chocolates you love. Even if you buy chocolate, go for dark chocolate.
- Try new restaurants to experience flavors from different cultures to find new favorites and reduce your cravings.
- Lastly, schedule an appointment with your dentist and ask her/him how much harm the chocolate has caused to your teeth. Take this as an inspiration to quit.
In short, these steps will help you to eliminate the root-cause of your addiction to chocolate.
Becoming a Healthy Chocoholic: Withdrawal Symptoms
You will experience some withdrawal symptoms while trying to give-up on the unhealthy chocolate so try to replace it with one of our recipes to feel less tempted and avoid depriving yourself completely.
Withdrawal Symptoms include:
- You might feel some symptoms relating to caffeine withdrawal, especially if you have been eating coffee flavored chocolates.
- You might feel low levels of energy as a result of sugar withdrawal which could even lead to depression or heavy mood swings.
- Finally, you will feel frustrated and irritable without a good reason because you would be denying yourself of your favorite foo. Try to stay committed and don’t give in.
Keeping in mind these points will make it easy for you to prepare for various symptoms of withdrawal and stay motivated on quitting.
Becoming a Healthy Chocoholic: Be Mindful and Don’t Choose Unhealthy Alternatives
Do not substitute the chocolate with some other form of unhealthy food and repeat the vicious cycle of harming your health.
Keep the following tips in mind while curbing your cravings:
- When the craving strikes, prepare a healthy chocoholic recipe!
- As a matter of fact, you can also eat dark chocolate for fighting off your cravings.
Dark Chocolate: The Healthy Chocoholic’s Best Friend!
Wait a second and savor the moment as we are going to tell you that you do not need to give up your love for chocolate. Furthermore, the right kind of chocolate, known as high-quality dark chocolate, contains almost 70 percent cocoa.
In summary, dark chocolate is filled with healthy benefits such as flavonoids, which maintains cardiovascular health and lowers the risk of cancer. Additionally, dark chocolate contains antioxidants which are essential for a strong immune system.
Health Benefits of Dark Chocolate:
- Reduce your risk of stroke: Research suggests that dark chocolate helps circulation of the blood from and to the heart due to the presence of the compound flavonoid. It does so by keeping the blood vessels flexible instead of becoming stiffer over time. It also doesn’t let the blood cells to stick to the inner walls of the vessels. This causes build up and blockage of the vessels.
- Diabetes Prevention: Dark chocolate helps to prevent diabetes as well. Research has shown that one of the major causes of diabetes in your body is inflammation. This increases our resistance to insulin as time passes. Dark chocolate helps your body to prevent diabetes by reducing resistance against the body’s natural insulin.
- Improve the Functionality of Brain: Studies suggest that students who eat dark chocolate before an exam perform better compared to the other students. The compounds found in dark chocolate increase the flow of blood to the brain. In turn, this enhances memory, attention span, problem solving skills and reaction time. It also boosts the production of the chemical, endorphin. This makes you feel happy and boosts your mind.
- Cancer Prevention: Research has also shown that the compound flavonoid found in dark chocolate or cocoa helps to prevent cell damage and even has the ability to repair damaged cells and inhibits the growth of tumors. A research conducted at Georgetown University treated cancerous cells with the help of the Pentamer compound found in cocoa. It actually helps the cells stop dividing by suppressing the proteins they needed to divide.
- Weight Loss: If you eat dark chocolate before having lunch or dinner, you would definitely eat far less. The chemicals in the chocolate trigger the hormones in your body that make you feel full and you eat less as a result.
Other kinds of chocolates contain added chemicals and more sugars which are highly addictive. White chocolate is technically not even considered chocolate, however sad it may sound, as it doesn’t contain cocoa. Try to avoid white chocolate because its basic ingredients are sugar, cocoa butter, soy, milk, lecithin and added flavors which result in it being loaded with sugar and saturated fat.
Choosing dark chocolate is helpful as it has much less sugar and is rich in cocoa. In addition, you can get the maximum benefit of dark chocolate by using our favorite recipes to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
Recipes for the Healthy Chocoholic
You’ll be able to quit unhealthy habits and maintain a healthy lifestyle with these healthy chocoholic recipes.
Fight your cravings and feel content! Plus, SAVE 30% off PEScience’s Chocolate Frosted Cupcake Protein Powder with coupon code: BYEYONDFIT!
Chocolate Cherry Superfood Balls
Yummy Chocolate Milkshake
Chocolate and Kale Smoothie
Healthy Hot Cocoa
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