By: Kelli Kieselbach
Chocolate, chocolate, chocolate! It’s that time of year, and chocolate is everywhere.
Celebrating and showing affection using chocolates and sugar filled treats has become an important and unavoidable part of our culture. It can be a difficult time for some of us who have health concerns around consuming so much sugary and processed foods. Maintaining moderation can be a huge challenge but there’s no need to restrict yourself from this tasty treat altogether (unless you’re allergic… please don’t eat it!).
You can however use the following tips and tricks to help reduce the impact of its many negative side effects!
Tips to Reduce the Chocolate Overload
- When given chocolate, take it to parties and celebrations to be shared around to lessen the likelihood of you eating the whole box.
- Keep it out of sight! The constant reminder can heighten the desire and we are more likely to eat it just because it’s there.
- Practice mindful eating. Be intentional about when you choose to eat your treat, making time and space to savour it perhaps with a nice coffee or herbal tea.
- Eat or serve sweets with raw nuts and fresh fruit. The added protein and fibre from the nuts and fruit helps slow the release of sugar into the bloodstream, lessening it’s negative impacts on blood sugar levels.
- Help children learn moderation by allowing them to choose a designated amount to eat today and choose what to save for coming days. This avoids restriction which can be damaging but gets them thinking about enjoying it at another time.
- Always serve healthier options alongside chocolate and sweets to promote balance.
- Choose alternative gifts to chocolate. If you know someone who is trying to avoid sugar, a nut mix, fancy teas, flowers, movie date are great gift options. Ask extended family to give your child a book or toy as a gift in place of chocolate.
- Choose quality over quantity! This is a big one. Enjoying a good quality chocolate or other sweet treat is better than consuming piles of poor quality products. You may even get some nutrition from a good quality chocolate or a carefully made raw dessert. For example, cocoa has loads of health benefits due to it’s high antioxidant content. Unfortunately, the more processing and ingredients we add to it the unhealthier it becomes.
So, this Easter enjoy your chocolate and hot cross buns in moderation and without guilt.
Have a wonderful Easter!
Article supplied with thanks to Kelli Kieselbach.
About the Author: Kelli Kieselbach is a Naturopath and Nutritionist with a passion for a holistic and natural approach to health and wellbeing. She also works to educate Christian ministry leaders in self care and avoiding burnout.