For the video version of this post, check out my Facebook page!
Either way, make sure you hit up the awesome recipes at the bottom 🙂
Let’s pretend it’s 3:00 in the afternoon.
What’s something a lot of people crave right about now?
Did you say CHOCOLATE?
The reason why might surprise you!
Many of us start to notice a dip in our energy levels and attention spans and the cumulative impact of stress throughout the day by mid-afternoon. Why not give our body a boost in energy, feel good chemicals and relaxation at the time we need it most? Why not enjoy some chocolate?
High quality dark chocolate that contains a high percentage of cacao (ka-KOW) is packed with magnesium.
Magnesium is known as the relaxation and anti-anxiety mineral, and most of us are deficient in it. Not only that, but in times of stress and high demands, our body needs it more than ever. Sources of magnesium include spinach, oats, beans, pumpkin seeds, leafy greens, sesame seeds.
The key is to use QUALITY chocolate. I’ve written before here about why I became a qualitarian and what it means to be one. As the word suggests, I encourage you to focus on eating the highest quality food you can, especially when it comes to things like chocolate – the darker and purer, the better.
One of the purest forms of chocolate we can eat is cacao nibs.
These bitter, crunchy chocolate bits are peeled and crumbled from dried, whole cacao beans. They are PACKED with nourishing, fueling goodness! When we hear about chocolate being good for us, these little guys take the prize. One ounce (about 1/4 cup) of cacao nibs contains:
- 35% of the recommended daily value of relaxing magnesium
- 6 GRAMS of fiber, which fills us up and keeps things moving in our digestive system. Only about 3% of the population eats the adequate minimum intake of fiber, even though it is one of the main disease fighters, blood sugar regulators, and energy stabilizers out there
- 4 grams of satiating protein
- Over HALF of the recommended daily value of copper and manganese, trace minerals that help us with formation of tissues (like bones and skin), energy production, and blood sugar balance.
You can find them in the natural food aisle of your grocery store, but I find the best deals at HomeGoods or online at Amazon or Vitacost. Wegmans, Whole Foods, and MOMs Organic Market carry them as well.
You can enjoy cacao nibs in trail mix, cookies, chocolate bark, brownie bites, sprinkled on top of smoothies or avocado pudding (recipe coming!), and as a topping for my chocolate walnut brownies.