When It Comes to Chocolate, Choose Dark

Janis Hunter
Home & Garden Information Center

If you buy that special someone a box of chocolates for Valentine’s Day, choose dark chocolate to show them how much you really care. Dark chocolate is a delicious treat containing healthy antioxidants and less fat and sugar than milk chocolate or white chocolate.

The darker the chocolate is, the less fat and sugar it contains, and the healthier it is to eat. The most beneficial dark chocolate is at least 70% cocoa. A little bit goes a long way, so it should be eaten in small portions.

The healthy antioxidants in dark chocolate are the same as those found in fruits, vegetables, green tea and red wine. Although we don’t know the exact amount to eat for maximum health effect, ¾ ounce of dark chocolate provides the same amount (400 milligrams) of antioxidants as a glass of red wine.

Refer to HGIC 4090, When It Comes to Chocolate, Choose Dark for a nutritive comparison of the different types of chocolates, the health benefits of eating dark chocolate, and health concerns related to eating other types of chocolate.

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