Chocolate may just be the world’s most perfect world. Chocolate is known all over the world for its deep sweet flavor, and has long been the prime ingredient in popular desserts.
Chocolate can come in many different varieties and forms. It can be used as a flavoring for drinks such as coffee, tea, and milk. But most people seem to agree that eating a piece of chocolate is all it takes to fall in love with the food. Now that the winter months are right around the corner, many people are looking forward to hot chocolate and cozying up with friends and family.
Hot chocolate is a hot beverage that contains pieces of chocolate, cocoa powder, milk, and sugar. People have been enjoying hot chocolate for nearly 2000 years! It became popular in the Western world when it was introduced to Europe by Mexico.
As recent as the 19th century, hot chocolate was used as a stomach remedy — treating various digestive problems from nausea, upset stomach, to heartburn. Most people turn to a grocery store to get hot chocolate mix, however, the best hot chocolate is that which is made at home.
There are several different ways of making hot chocolate from home. One way is from semisweet chocolate pieces or chips. Others like to make hot chocolate using cocoa powder and sugar. Still others prefer to doctor up readymade mixes with their own ingredients and garnishes. In any case, there is no need to buy expensive hot chocolate from a café or restaurant. Instead, the kids will love helping to make homemade hot chocolate on cold winter afternoons.
Hot chocolate does not just taste good, it can also provide some amazing health benefits. Because hot chocolate contains beneficial antioxidants, it can potentially help one prevent cancer, heart problems, and slow the aging process. Just like someone who drinks a glass of red wine a day for the antioxidants, one can also benefit from drinking a cup of hot chocolate, plus it tastes so much sweeter! In fact, one would have to drink two cups of red wine to get the same amount of antioxidants found in hot chocolate. Hot chocolate also contains gallic acid, another beneficial antioxidant. Gallic acid is used to repair internal hemorrhage, kidney disease, and diabetes.
It should be noted here that the “hot” in “hot chocolate” be emphasized. Even more antioxidants can be released when the beverage is heated up. Drinking hot chocolate is so much healthier than eating a run-of-the-mill candy bar because it is much lower in saturated fats. While looking at hot chocolate, some is darkest than others. However, the darker the chocolate, the more antioxidants it contains — meaning that it is healthier.
Finally, hot chocolate has an aspirin type effect on the body. Instead of reaching for a bottle of pain reliever, grab a delicious cup of hot chocolate to soothe the pains of a workout, job, or stress. To top it all off, that cup of hot chocolate will improve focus and concentration while warming the body!