vulcano_chocolate_0721Sweet tooth got you down? No worries — in a few years’ time, there will be a no-melt, low-cal chocolate bar to indulge in. This new creation, which has been dubbed “Vulcano,” is currently in the testing stages by a Swiss chocolate company called Barry Callebaut. Its unique composition allows it to be melted by salivary chemicals, rather than heat, with a more crisp and flaky texture.
Medical experts in the past few years have been spreading the word about chocolate’s health benefits, mainly as a source of flavonoids. Flavonoids are known for their contributions to cardiovascular health by regulating platelets, blood vessels and general heart bio-compounds, and have antioxidant powers that reduce damage done by free radical waste in the body. The fat in chocolate also contains a portion of oleic acids, which are the healthy fatty acids also found in olive oil.

Of course, moderation with chocolate is always recommended, due to its high-calorie density and saturated fat content. But this new “Vulcano” product might just be the perfect solution. Besides, there’s no such thing as too much of a good thing, right?

Until that heaven-sent chocolate bar is released, here are some tips to guide your chocolate taste buds for the healthiest chocolate choices out there.

  1. Milk or dark? While some might not appreciate the bitterness of dark chocolate, the darker the chocolate, the better it is for you in terms of flavonoid content. Milk chocolate, which has gone through more steps of commercial processing, has lost much more of its cocoa content relative to dark chocolate products. Some brands of chocolate, such as Lindt, on the other hand, have up to 90 percent in cocoa content.
  2. Keep it simple. Stick with the basic chocolate bar for the purest taste and healthiest content. The more extra stuff in the chocolate bar there is, the less healthy it’s likely to be. Try to stay away from marshmallow, nutty or caramel additions, since they can easily pack on the calories and take away from that pure chocolate-y taste.
  3. Moderation. Even with these health benefits, those with a sugar tooth for chocolate should be cautious how much they consume. Ghirardelli sells chocolate products in nicely sized individual servings. Fun-sized packages of Hershey’s selection of chocolate can also serve as a nice afternoon pick-me-up.

Photo of Barry Callebaut’s no-melt, low-cal chocolate; copyright Barry Callebaut, via

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