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back to article Keep your quinoa, hipsters: Boffins back healthy slabs of choc

And there was great rejoicing: scientists researching dark chocolate have identified something even better than a vague correlation between deliciousness and health. Boffins from Louisiana State University have identified the mechanisms that turn chocolate into heart-healthy compounds. The research, presented to a meeting of …

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Almost daily ...

... I enjoy an ounce or two of 100% Cacao with my third (and last) cup of coffee.

Quinoa has been a part of my larder since my parents were students at Berkeley in the late 1950s/early 1960s.

Some things are obvious after the fact ;-)

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Devil

Re: Almost daily ...

Imagine the irony if you were to get run over by a bus tomorrow.

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Paris Hilton

Re: Almost daily ...

"Imagine the irony if you were to get run over by a bus tomorrow...."

Lying there, in a pool of dark liquid deliciousness as it seeps from your squashed torso...

/that was odd...

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Devil

Re: Almost daily ...

"Imagine the irony if you were to get run over by a bus tomorrow."

And the double irony of the paramedics turning up wearing Google Glass

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@FartingHippo (was: Re: Almost daily ...)

Look up the difference between correlation and causation.

A little education goes a long way.

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Pint

Great news

I'll break open those bars off extra-dark chocolate my kids gave me for my birthday to celebrate in style

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Anonymous Coward

Just decided to have chocolate for breakfast

just for medicinal purposes of course...

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What chocolate?

Was the study made on dark chocolate (over 70% cocoa)? Or on the crap now called chocolate, with less than 30% of cocoa?

And don't get me started on what passes for chocolate in the states, I really wonder what they tested in the Louisiana State University...

Maybe they did the smart thing and studied the microbes action on pure cocoa, but then one has to wonder how this will apply to the real world stuff.

PS: After reading the original study, it is clear they chose the third option - "The team tested three cocoa powders using a model digestive tract" - even if the study speaks of dark chocolate.

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Re: What chocolate?

Tesco's "Plain Chocolate contains Cocoa solids 40% minimum." Not that I happened to have a bar handy, you understand.

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Re: What chocolate?

:) But cadbury's stuff (as well as almost anything else by krap, pardon, kraft foods) usually has only 20%. Not that I happen to have a 360g fruit & nut bar here, of course.

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Happy

re: What chocolate

I think that we are talking about the Lindt Excellence 99% territory rather than Tesco's plain

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Happy

Re: What chocolate?

"And don't get me started on what passes for chocolate in the states"

Related anecdote:

Several years ago a friend of the family came from the States to stay a few weeks with us. As a present, she brought about one kilogram of a classy and expensive American chocolate from a small brand and two bags of American 'top quality' coffee, made from true sackcloth and with several rubber stamps in exotic languages.

The quality of both products was abysmal. Now, in most of Europe we would hesitate to give this American chocolate to cattle, for fear of causing a stampede, and the American coffee would be considered a crime against humanity.

When she left, she -only half jokingly- apologized to us for having brought such crap presents, and she stated that she would have a hard time adapting back to the American stuff.

She visited us again two years ago and told us that she had installed an espresso coffee machine at home, and that she purchased all of her chocolate and coffee from Europe and South America, through the Internets.

Yes, I still remember the chocolate's flavour. It tasted a little like half-burnt cardboard and had bits that looked exactly like dark sawdust. The coffee was simply indescribable. :-)

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Re: What chocolate?

Yup, one of my co-workers bought some chocolate with him when he flew over from Belgium.

He couldn't understand the crazed herd charge toward it, so we enlightened him with a bite from a Hershey's "chocolate" bar. He spit it out.

I got a Kit-Kat as a joke from a friend, and it had this horrible metallic taste. Look up PGPR (AKA polyglycerol polyricinoleate) on Google.

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Re: re: What chocolate

"Lindt Excellence 99%"

I'm always looking for the better (80+%) dark choc so I was amazed to find this in a French supermarket. I bought some out of curiosity. It was like eating cocoa powder in solid form; there was certainly nothing sweet about it. Not sure I actually liked it.

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Gold badge

Re: What chocolate?

Yup, one of my co-workers bought some chocolate with him when he flew over from Belgium.

He couldn't understand the crazed herd charge toward it, so we enlightened him with a bite from a Hershey's "chocolate" bar. He spit it out.

Yup. Know that one. I used to live in Belgium. And I became increasingly aware on my visits to good old Blighty that the sequence of events would go like this:

1. Me walks into room with friends / family / colleagues

2. Expectant hordes would say, "Got any chocolate?"

3. Then, and only then, would they bother to say hello to me.

I didn't attempt a corellation between the warmth of the greeting I'd (eventually) receive and whether I'd bought choccies or not, as this would probably have been too depressing...

And this is the UK, where decent choccy is easily available. And the Cadbury's stuff is at least not as horrible as Hersheys. I can only imagine the reaction in the US. Although, saying that, you'll only prize my Cadbury's Wispa bars from my cold, dead hands...

But there's no accounting for taste. On one visit to Blighty I found myself buying Curly Wurlys. For months I'd been overwhelmed with a desire for them, presumably becasue they weren't available. Homesickness can do strange things to you, given that I lived within 200 yards of a branch of Neuhaus (yum), with a less amazing shop even closer. I bought a pack of 4, and ate them all the afternoon after I'd got home from the airport. I don't think I've had one since.

Tried some 100% cocoa stuff recently. And I wasn't massively impressed. It was interesting, and a strange texture (as there was no fat/oil to make it pliable), but no sweetness whatsoever. And seemed to suck all the moisture out of your mouth as well.

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Re: What chocolate?

" And seemed to suck all the moisture out of your mouth as well."

Yes, 99% chocolate will do that to your mouth. I usually fix that with a small glass of cold white wine, that blends perfectly with the cocoa. Or, if you are a teetotaller, a glass of cold sweetened milk goes very nicely also.

Other commentards have suggested also using a good whisky, or even whiskey! ;-)

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Re: re: What chocolate

@ Ed_UK:

Try the 90%. Break the squares into 4 and let it melt slowly on your tongue. Goes really nice with a strong black coffee of reasonable source. Or a joint. Or both. The 99% is a little overkill, best saved for when paired with something or grated onto another treat as part of the recipe. I can actually fool my niece and nephew with the 90% instead of feeding them the confection crap that is a 'chocolate' bar.

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Re: What chocolate?

Oh humble wise Euro person-

So your dim witted guest from the States had the nerve to bring you a few bags of American 'top quality' coffee. How quaint those well meaning idiots can be.

Hello all knowing one, Where was that 'American' coffee grown?..Manhattan, or maybe it was from the mountains of Detroit?

Wait, I think it was from the tree shaded plantations of Las Vegas.

Smart ass, you reveal your ignorance despite your over abundance of snobbery.

They don't grow coffee in the USofA.

Besides we wouldn't have enough peasants to pick the harvest, and do all the other labor intensive effort required to deliver up your morning coffee.

'High' grade US brands of coffee, as well as the low grade ones, all are made from beans grown in Latin America, or Africa...or possibly Northern England, or just outside of Brussels.

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Re: What chocolate? (@ spermacide)

"Smart ass, you reveal your ignorance despite your over abundance of snobbery.

They don't grow coffee in the USofA."

Please, point me to the part of my comment where it says that the coffee was grown in the USA. Or, for that matter, the point where I say that we grow our own coffee in Europe.

No, Mr. Spermivore, coffee makers in both places import the raw stuff, process it -e.g. by baking it- , package it in some kind of recipients and sell it to retail, who then sell it to the public. The difference is the quality -and price- of the stuff that they import, and the quality of the processing.

A company selling that crap in my part of the World would close down in one year. If American consumers can put up with it, that's their problem, not mine.

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Does that mean

That chocolate chip cookies are medicinal?

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@ JimBoom

I see no reason why you shouldn't at least test your own theory, with... at least one or two packets :-)

Enjoy.

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So is it ok to chew coca leaves now?

I get confused by all these scientific words.

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Re: So is it ok to chew coca leaves now?

Please note the minor yet significant difference between "coca" and "cocoa". Getting it wrong could lead to disaster, either by chewing a narcotic leaf instead of a tasty sweet or worse, severely injuring your nose when you attempt to snort a bar of Green and Black's Maya Gold.

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WTF?

Re: So is it ok to chew coca leaves now?

Not only "coca" and "cocoa", but also "cacao". The vowels seem to drift around at random.

"Cacao" is the stuff sold by the rather annoying toff from the TV series Willy's Wonky Chocolate Factory, better known as "How I struggled desperately to build my small business despite several million pounds-worth of free TV publicity". The chocolate's not bad, actually.

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Re: So is it ok to chew coca leaves now?

"cacao" is the closest to the original Olmec pronunciation. "cocoa" is supposedly an english misspelling that never got corrected. Latin languages still use "cacao".

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Acai

Might not be any use for losing weight, but it's certainly very tasty as a frozen mush with strawberries and chocolate icecream. Ideally on the beach in Rio...

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Get off my lawn!

When did plain chocolate become dark chocolate? GRRR!

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Re: Get off my lawn!

Before I was sentient I think.

So sometime pre-1985.

I'm calling it an established term.

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Re: Get off my lawn!

I could be wrong, but I believe, in the current American vernacular, plain "chocolate" is intended for baking, whereas Milk Chocolate and Dark Chocolate are meant for direct consumption. In this case, and depending on where you find it in your supermarket, Chocolate and Dark Chocolate bars are usually priced identically.

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Re: American vernacular

I'm not American and neither is El Reg.

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Linux

wild life chocolate...

Here in the US there is some very nice wild life logo'd chocolate that is 72-80%.

As I managed to wean myself off sugar, a bit of bitter chocolate is preferable to the many, many biscuits....;-)

P.

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Let's not get carried away

Pure chocolate I.e. 100 per cent cocoa powder is totally bleeding unpalatable!

That's why we needed lashings of oocoa butter sugar and usually milk to get it down.

Of course it is nice occasionally to suck on a slab of 99% but that is only because it is a great excuse to wash it down with a carafe of Black Label or Glenfiddich.

Damn now I'm thirsty.

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Re: Let's not get carried away

> Pure chocolate I.e. 100 per cent cocoa powder is totally bleeding unpalatable!

Dunno. I regularly mix 100% cocoa powder (fairtrade, natch) with hot water to make a thick paste, nothing else added, and it's fine. I also have in front of me (ok, chewing a lump now) of 100% chocolate. It's colombian (calls itself LUKER, I guess that's the brand, bought in london btw) and I like it more than sweetened stuff. It's quite acceptable, according to taste.

Ah, whiskey. Recently got a bottle of cask-strength stuff as prezzie for a mate, got a big splash of it to try, nice stuff! May I recommend it to you, or falling back to Talisker FTW[*]

[*] Fucks The Wallet, at least if it's the good stuff.

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Re: Let's not get carried away

1. Eat 100% pure, and let it sit in your mouth.

2. Bite into an apple afterward. I find Gala works best for me, but you make your own call.

3. Wipe down your pants.

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Happy

Glenfiddich?

... Ach! "Supermarket Whiskey"!

I you want to blast away the nasty taste of 99% chocolate, you need Lagavulin. Prior to which, of course, you'll need a spare fifty quid......

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Re: Glenfiddich?

Agree on the Lagavulin (the 16-yr old is the best spirit I think I've ever tested), but Glenfiddich is whisky, not whiskey.

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Re: Glenfiddich?

You can't always be picky in the world of booze.

We don't all drive McLaren P1s, despite that surely being preferable to an old beat up thing with over 100,000 miles.

Alcoholics can't (well, unless they're millionaire dipsos) afford extremely expensive booze for every occasion.

I know a good beer when I taste one, but at the same time, sometimes a cheap pint of cold swill will do the trick without breaking the bank.

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Pint

Re: Glenfiddich?

"... Ach! "Supermarket Whiskey"!". On the other hand there was a survey, some years ago, claiming the cheaper brands contain less "poisonous" stuff. And with a spell of being honest I some times wonder if I am not rather in for the alcohol.

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Coat

I'm confused....

"catechin and epicatechin – large polyphenolic polymers – are poorly digested in the stomach, the microbes take over in the colon: the fibre is fermented" - so would it be better used as a suppository?

"* A palm berry" - was this some early hybrid PDA? ¿IT angle?

Sorry couldn't help it, gettin' me coat...

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