Sunday, January 3, 2016

Confessions of a Chocoholic

First thing I have to learn in this new year is that the year is 2016, that is 2016, not 2015.  One thing that I will never change is my love of chocolate.  I was trained from an early age to love chocolate.  It was bred into me by my father.  Every single night he ate a whole large Hershey bar.  In those days they came in a size that no longer exists with raised squares, each had a letter in the name H-E-R-S-H-E-Y and every night before I went to bed I would be given 2 squares from his bar together with my glass of Himbeernsaft (actually it was a very small bit of raspberry syrup in a large glass of water which stayed by my bed all night).  This is my excuse for having always had a sweet tooth.

In more recent times we have all been told of all the terrible diseases we can get from eating too many sweets but it is part of my DNA … of course there was no such thing when I was a kid! I have tried to limit my intake of “unhealthy food” but…  then I remember my mother saying, “I only have to live long enough until they tell me what was bad for me is good for me again.” 

Here is a souvenir from another age, the Desert Bar made to withstand the heat of the Iraq desert at the time of the Desert Storm War.   I have kept in a tin Hershey box for the past quarter century.

I never knew there was such a thing as a chocolate tour.  It seems that I am not the only Chocoholic in the world and these tours exist in many places.  My daughter, Cathy, knew her father well enough to buy Penelope and me a chocolate tour in New York.  I don’t remember it precisely but I do know that it was a downtown walking and tasting tour and we went into several chocolate shops and ended up in a shop that actually made the chocolate on site.  That is always the best, fresh chocolate.

The nice young man who gave us the tour made my day, so to speak.  Imagine my surprise and delight when he spoke about the “Dark Chocolate Diet.”  At first, of course, I was dubious but then I started to look into it.  Here are just a few of the books about chocolate dieting that I found on Amazon.

“Chocolate Diet” by Jennifer Stone
“Eat Chocolate, Lose Weight” by Will Clower
“The Chocolate Diet” by Sally Ann Vauk
“The Chocolate Lover’s Diet” by Carole Matthews

I hasten to say in the interest of full disclosure I have read none of them.  I have also seen a CBS news report saying that the Chocolate Diet was a hoax.  So I conducted my own experiment.  I haven’t had the will power to actually diet recently, that takes work.  I can tell you, however, that at least for me a couple of bites of deep dark chocolate will take the place of a cigarette, for instance.  It can be instantly satisfying while it might take an entire piece of cake to give the same feeling of having had enough.

From what I read about the diet you are supposed to have a very small piece of dark chocolate before and after a meal.  This is turn will cut down on the feeling that you need more food. I don’t believe that anyone is saying that the chocolate isn’t fattening just that it is satisfying and less is more.

Unfortunately, this will not work with my Hershey bars of old since they were milk chocolate
not the dark chocolate advocated.  There is temptation everywhere!!

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