It’s more than wishful thinking; chocolate can be good for you!
Dark chocolate and cocoa is packed with anti-oxidants which protect our cells from damaging free radicals, help fight off disease and basically keep us healthy. Cocoa and dark chocolate also contains high levels of important minerals such as copper, iron, potassium and magnesium. Anyone stepping up their activity for summer races will find that they feel better if they keep up their mineral levels which can become depleted though sweat and heavy exercise…what better excuse can you have to eat more good quality chocolate.
I have been putting together a collection of breakfast recipes for my new book for child and teen athletes – Go Faster Food for Kids – and I’m searching for ways to break away from the processed cereal culture. This is a hard task when we’re bombarded by advertising and such tantalisingly attractive packaging on the shelves. I have a big problem with the majority of processed cereals; marketed as healthy but essentially stripped of natural goodness which is then artificially restored, with ‘added’ nutrients. It’s really difficult to sell your child (even my children who can really appreciate good, wholesome food) a wholegrain and natural alternative like porridge when there is a pack of shredded or puffed, sugary wheat-based cardboard in the cupboard!
Hence my idea of chocolate granola! If you ask me, this chocolate granola gives you the best of both worlds; sweet, crunchy and very delicious, packed with a good balance of low GI, sustaining and natural carbohydrate, fibre, omega-3 fatty acids, protein and essential minerals…and it even makes the milk go brown and chocolatey like it does with Cocopops.