Healthy Kid Chocolate


Chocolate is a magical ingredient bringing joy and making memories, like kids sharing the delight in a hot fudge sundae with their family. Three thousand years ago, kids in Central America were drinking chocolate flavored with chilies and spices. The Mayans thought it was a gift from the gods to give them strength and endurance. Chocolate comes from cacao beans, seeds of the cacao tree that grow inside a thick pod the size of a coconut in the rainforest. The beans are aged with their natural yeasts, covered with banana leaves, dried, and roasted. The shells burst open when they are roasted and the nibs inside are removed to become chocolate liquor and cocoa butter. Chocolate was at first ground, over and over, by hand but now there are sophisticated techniques for transforming cacao beans into smooth molded bars for eating and baking. Kids can buy organic, fair trade, rainforest sustainable chocolate from manufacturers who adhere to strict guidelines. Studies at the University of California have shown that eating a 100 calories of dark chocolate a day results in a lower body mass index, lower levels of body fat, lower blood pressure, and a healthy heart. Dark chocolate is a super food with polyphenols that make it a treat for kids’ health and spirit.

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