Minted Hot Chocolate

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Who doesn’t love a good hot chocolate? Better yet, who doesn’t love a hot chocolate that’s healthy but still tastes just as good? I mean, they’re the best things you can have to cheer you up on a cold and gloomy winters day. So with winter well on its way down here in the Southern Hemisphere I’ve brought you a refreshing twist on the classic hot chocolate. Enjoy!

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Recipe

Minted Hot Chocolate

Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • 1 tbs mint leaves
  • 250ml (1 cup) water
  • 375ml (1 ½ cup) milk
  • 100g (2/3 cup) dark chocolate
  • 1 tsp coconut sugar

Directions:

  1. Place mint leaves in a bowl. Boil water and pour it over the leaves. Let it stand for about 10 minutes.
  2. Heat milk. Break dark chocolate into pieces; add to hot milk. Stir until chocolate has dissolved.
  3. Strain the mint and add the liquid to the to chocolate milk. Reheat. Sweeten to taste with sugar.IMG_3781

The Lowdown:

Just because we’re athletes doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy one of life’s greatest pleasures.

Surely by now you’ve all heard the wonderful news that chocolate, dark, in particular does, in fact, have some remarkable health benefits. It has been known to reduce things like depression and stress, is full of beneficial antioxidants and can boost your brain power.

But did you know that consuming dark chocolate may help improve your athletic endurance. What?! Yes, you heard me right. When small doses are eaten alongside regular exercise your performance could be boosted by up to 50% according to a study conducted by scientists at UC San Diego. This is because dark chocolate contains the plant compound epicatechin, which appears to stimulate muscle growth in a similar way to vigorous activity such as jogging. (Cohen, 2011)IMG_3766

But before you go smash down that whole block of Cadbury’s Marvelous Creations or some Ben & Jerry’s, just remember that only a very small amount of DARK chocolate is needed to intensify the effects of a workout. Any more and it won’t even make a difference.

Tanisha xx

Sources:

http://www.laweekly.com/restaurants/dark-chocolate-may-improve-athletic-endurance-2382321

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2037556/How-dark-chocolate-boosts-fitness-exercise.html

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