The new episode of the Sustainable Food podcast talks about the preparation, types, consumption and benefits of chocolate: Which one is better for health? Can we eat it daily?
Mark A. Philbrick/BYU Photo
If there’s one thing that pretty much everyone likes it’s the chocolate: the average Spaniard has an annual consumption of almost 6 kilos of cocoa and chocolate. But despite its popularity, we don’t know much about it derived from cocoa.
From the hand of Laura González, responsible for nutrition, health and well-being at Nestlé in Spain, we discovered new facets of a food we thought we knew. For this reason, it has the collaboration of John Morenomarketing manager for Nestlé chocolate bars and Luis Rojasproduction manager and Nestlé chocolate specialist.
But, even if they like it a lot, there are those who have never seen the cocoa bean or are completely unaware of the process it goes through to become chocolate.
From cocoa bean to chocolate
Cocoa cultivation is very localized: the weatherthe geography and the conditions of some areas of Africa or South America are ideal for their growth. That’s why the 70% of world production come from this area.
But how is the cocoa bean transformed into chocolate? Laura González explains the process through which the raw material goes from harvest to commercialization: shelling, fermentation and dryingfermentation being the most important of this first stage.
Later, other factors come into play, such as toasted: Luis Rojas, an expert in the field, speaks of it as “the step that has the most impact on the final flavor of the chocolate”.
From here, depending on what is done with the cocoa bean will be obtained pasta or lardboth basic ingredients in the preparation of chocolate.
What does milk chocolate have?
In the case of milk chocolate, Rojas explains that its preparation is based on cocoa butter, cocoa paste and a kind of preparation of milk with sugarsimilar to condensed milk.
Varieties of chocolates
But milk chocolate is not the only type of chocolate, not by a long shot. The most common varieties are:
- chocolate. Known as dark chocolate. Contains sugars and cocoa.
- Chocolate with milk. It is made on the basis of sugars, cocoa and dairy derivatives
- White chocolate. It has sugars, dairy products and cocoa butter as mandatory ingredients.
Is dark chocolate better?
As they say, for tastes, colors. Especially if we talk from the sensory prism.
“We can’t say that one type of chocolate is better than another from a sensory point of view”, says Luis Rojas.
The cocoa flavor is intense, bitter, astringent and not everyone enjoys it in the same way.
What can be assured is what do you like more. In this regard, Joan Moreno indicates that the trends in chocolate consumption are clear: the demand for chocolate has increased 70% or more chocolate. But what holds the throne is the chocolate with milk.
“Milk chocolate is a chocolate consumed by all segments of society”, says Moreno.
But nutritionally speaking…
Of course, not everything is focused on him aroma of chocolate The nutritional value it is a factor that we cannot neglect in any concept. In general terms, the nutritional benefits of cocoa are:
What about the nutritional value of different types of chocolate?
Depending on the type of chocolate, certain benefits are distinguished:
- dark chocolate. Greater percentage of cocoa, so it has more benefits, in addition to the caffeine or theobromine, stimulating substances found in solid cocoa. It’s what he has better nutritional value.
- Chocolate with milk. Less healthy than dark chocolate, but with one much milder taste. In terms of nutritional value, it is between dark and white chocolate.
- White chocolate. It’s the chocolate more caloric and with more quantity of sugar. It has a larger percentage in fat, for its proportion of cocoa butter. For its content of milk has:
- Vitamin A, B, K
- Minerals such as iron
Is it healthy to consume chocolate daily?
Although we all expect a resounding yes, Nestlé’s head of health, nutrition and well-being, much to her dismay, debunks this myth.
“Although cocoa contains many nutritional benefits, in the end it has other ingredients of less nutritional value”, he indicates.
The question, as in everything, is consume it responsibly and always, in moderation.
Audio – Program the scalpel View this content.