Chocolate. Even just thinking about decadent, rich treat makes those with a major sweet tooth begin to salivate.
It is one of those rare indulgences that can truly be beneficial to your body, but only if you are eating the right kind.
Not so surprisingly, most chocolate companies, especially the popular, cheap ones, use cheap ingredients that can wreak havoc on your body instead of benefiting it.
Harmful ingredients are found in brands like Hershey’s, Mars, Nestle, Godiva, Ghiradelli and Russell Stover.
Sadly, paying premium prices does not always mean premium ingredients.
Ingredients worth avoiding
High Fructose Corn Syrup—it is no secret that this ingredient has been linked to some serious health issues and should be avoided at all costs.
Princeton University published a study linking HCFS to higher weight gain than other sugars.
Partially Hydrogenated Oils (Trans fat)—These fats are made by adding hydrogen to an oil which changes its chemical make-up to one that is more olid and saturated.
Trans fat has been found to be a dangerous ingredient linked to significantly increased risks of heart disease.
As small as a daily 40 calorie increase in trans fat showed a 23% increased risk.
When checking out your food label, look for ingredients like “partially hydrogenated cottonseed oil/ palm oil/ soybean oil/ vegetable oil/ canola oil”, “trans fats” or “trans fatty acids”.
The National Academies of Science has stated about trans fats,
“…since they are not essential and provide no known health benefit, there is no safe level of trans fats, and people should eat as little of them as possible…”
This ingredient is found in far too many sweet, processed foods, including many of the above chocolate brands.
Genetically Modified Organisms—GMOs have been the topic of conversation for quite a few years now.
Unfortunately, unless you choose an organic brand of chocolate, it is difficult to know which ingredients, if any, are non-GMO since candy products are not required to be labeled.
Some GMO foods have been linked to serious health issues including allergic reactions, cancer, toxicity and reproductive issues.
One ingredient commonly found in candy bars called soy lecithin is made from one of the most commonly genetically engineered ingredients on the planet—soy.
Growth Hormone—it is very likely that your favorite candy bar has been made with milk containing Recombinant Bovine Growth Hormone (rBGH).
This hormone is strictly used to increase milk production in cows, but the problem with that is that it has been shown to cause major health problems for those cows.
Mastitis is one of those health problems and occurs when one or many milk ducts become clogged and then infected.
The pus from that infection can leak into the milk as well as any antibiotics used to treat the infection.
This is absolutely something that needs to be avoided as rBGH milk contains excess levels of the natural growth factor (IGF-1).
IGF-1 is easily absorbed through the gut, and excess levels have been shown to cause breast, colon and prostate cancers as well as contribute to the decreased ability of the body to naturally defend against early submicroscopic cancers.
To ensure you are not eating a chocolate bar with rBGH milk, buy an organic brand.
Artificial colors—sometimes it seems like artificial colors are mentioned every time a poor food choice is discussed.
While these colors are pretty obvious in candies like M&Ms or other multi-colored candies, you may be surprised to know that they can also be found in brown chocolate candies as well.
One example is Godiva’s 8 piece gold box and Russell Stover’s pecan clusters.
These candies are made with so many unnatural ingredients that the end result color is not brown so they have to add coloring to make it look natural.
Artificial food coloring has been linked to cancers and hyperactivity in children.
Artificial flavors—again, another topic that seems to pop up frequently, artificial flavors are developed in labs and have never been reviewed by the FDA for their safety.
One purpose of these flavors is to make you believe you are eating something that is sweet when it wouldn’t originally taste sweet.
Lead and Cadmium
A non-profit organization called As You Sow is one that has a mission to hold companies accountable when it comes to the safety and quality of their ingredients.
They had an independent laboratory test 50 different chocolate products and found that 35 of those 50 contained lead and cadmium amounts that are above the levels considered safe according to the Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act.
This is EXTREMELY problematic as both lead and cadmium have well-documented negative health impacts.
Some of the brands that contained high amounts of these heavy metals include Hershey’s, Earth Circle Foods, Ghirardelli, Cadbury, Lindt, Trader Joe’s, Godiva, Mars and Whole Foods.
Have a look at the chart below provided by As You Sow that shows each of the products they tested.
|Albertson’s, LLC (SuperValu, Inc.)||Wild Harvest Organic Rich Chocolate Hot Cocoa Mix||No warning required|
|Alfred Ritter Gmbh & Co Kg||Ritter Sport 73% Cocoa Fine Extra Dark Chocolate with fine cocoa from Ecuador||Lead and Cadmium*|
|Bissinger’s Handcrafted Chocolatier||Bissinger’s All natural 60% dark chocolate, whole almonds||Lead*|
|Cadbury Uk Ltd||Cadbury Mini Eggs Royal Dark Dark Chocolate With A Crisp Sugar Shell||Lead*|
|Cadbury Uk Ltd||Cadbury Royal Dark Dark Chocolate Indulgent Semi-Sweet||Lead*|
|Creative Natural Products, Inc.||Chocolove Extra Strong Dark Chocolate- 77% Cocoa Content||Lead*|
|Creative Natural Products, Inc.||Chocolove Strong Dark Chocolate Bar 70% Cocoa Content||Lead*|
|DeMet’s Candy Company||Flipz 50% cacao Dark Chocolate Covered Pretzels||No warning required|
|Earth Circle Foods Dba River Canyon Retreat Inc.||Earth Circle Organics Organic Balinese Cacao Nibs Cold Pressed||Cadmium|
|Endangered Species Chocolate, LLC||Endangered Species Chocolate Natural Dark Chocolate with 88% Cocoa||Lead and Cadmium*|
|Endangered Species Chocolate, LLC||Endangered Species Chocolate Natural Dark Chocolate (72% Cocoa)||Lead*|
|Equal Exchange, Inc.||Equal Exchange Organic & Fairly Traded Dark Chocolate Very Dark (71% Cacao)||Lead and Cadmium|
|Ferrero USA Inc.||Ferrero Collection Fine assorted Confections||No warning required|
|Ghirardelli Chocolate Company||Ghirardelli Chocolate Intense Dark Twilight Delight (72% Cacao)||Cadmium*|
|Ghirardelli Chocolate Company||Ghirardelli Chocolate Premium Baking Bar 100% Cacao Unsweetened Chocolate||Lead and Cadmium*|
|Ghirardelli Chocolate Company||Ghiradelli Intense Dark Midnight Reverie (86% Cacao)||No warning required|
|Ghirardelli Chocolate Company||Ghirardelli Chocolate Milk Chocolate Eggs||No warning required*|
|Ghirardelli Chocolate Company||Ghirardelli Chocolate Premium Baking Bar 60% Cacao Bittersweet Chocolate||No warning required*|
|Godiva Chocolatier, Inc.||Godiva Chocolatier 50% Cacao Dark Chocolate Sea Salt||Lead|
|Godiva Chocolatier, Inc.||Godiva Chocolatier 85% Cacao Extra Dark Chocolate||Lead and Cadmium|
|Godiva Chocolatier, Inc.||Godiva Chocolatier 72% Cacao Dark Chocolate||Lead*|
|Hershey Company||Scharffen Berger Semisweet Fine Artisan Dark Chocolate (62% cacao)||Cadmium*|
|Hershey Company||Scharffen Berger Extra Dark Fine Artisan Dark Chocolate (82% cacao)||Cadmium*|
|Hershey Company||Dagoba Organic Chocolate Eclipse Extra Strong Dark Chocolate (87% Cacao)||Lead and Cadmium*|
|Hershey Company||Dagoba Organic Chocolate New Moon Rich Dark Chocolate (74% Cacao)||Lead and Cadmium*|
|Hershey Company||Hershey’s Special Dark Mildly Sweet Chocolate||Lead*|
|Hershey Company||Hershey’s Kisses Milk Chocolate||No warning required*|
|Hershey Company||Hershey’s Milk Chocolate Eggs||No warning required*|
|Hershey Company||Hershey’s Solid Milk Chocolate Snapsy Snap-Apart Bunny Easy To Snap And Share||No warning required*|
|Jo’s Candies||Jo’s Candies Dark Chocolate Covered Graham Crackers All Natural||No warning required|
|Kraft Foods Global, Inc.||Cote D’Or 86% Noir Brut Belgian Dark Chocolate Confection||Lead and Cadmium*|
|Kraft Foods Group, Inc.||Toblerone Swiss Milk Chocolate Bar with Honey and Almond Nougat||No warning required|
|Lake Champlain Chocolates||Lake Champlain Chocolates Dark Chocolate Organic (57% Cocoa)||Lead and Cadmium*|
|Lindt & Sprungli (Usa) Inc.||Lindt Excellence 70% Cocoa Smooth Dark Chocolate Bar||Lead and Cadmium*|
|Lindt & Sprungli (Usa) Inc.||Lindt Excellence 85% Cocoa Extra Dark Chocolate Bar||Lead and Cadmium*|
|Lindt & Sprungli (USA) Inc.||Lindt Excellence A Touch of Sea Salt Dark (with Fleur de Sel sea salt crystals)||No warning required|
|Lindt & Sprungli Gmbh (Germany)||Lindt Gold Bunny Milk Chocolate||No warning required*|
|Mars, Incorporated||Snickers||No warning required|
|Mars, Incorporated||CocoaVia Daily Cocoa Extract Supplement||No warning required|
|Mars, Incorporated||Dove Silky Smooth Dark Chocolate Bar||Cadmium*|
|Mars, Incorporated||Dove Eggs Dark Chocolate Silky Smooth||Lead and Cadmium*|
|Mars, Incorporated||Snickers Bar||No warning required*|
|Mars, Incorporated||Dove Solid Milk Chocolate Bunny Silky Smooth||No warning required*|
|Mars, Incorporated||M&M’s Chocolate Candies Milk Chocolate, Made with Real Milk Chocolate||No warning required*|
|Mondelez International, Inc.||Green & Black’s Organic Dark 85% Cacao Bar||Lead and Cadmium*|
|Mondelez International, Inc.||Green & Black’s Organic Milk Chocolate (34% Cacao)||No warning required|
|Mondelez International, Inc.||Toblerone of Switzerland Milk Chocolate with Honey and Almond Nougat||No warning required*|
|Mondelez International, Inc.||Green & Black’s Organic Milk Chocolate (34% Cacao)||No warning required*|
|Moonstruck Chocolate Co||Moonstruck Solid Dark Chocolate Hand-Painted Calico Bunny||Lead*|
|Moonstruck Chocolate Co.||Moonstruck Dark Chocolate Chile Variado (68% cacao)||Lead|
|Nestle Holdings, Inc.||Nestle Crunch||No warning required|
|Nestle Holdings, Inc.||Ovaltine Classic Malt Mix||No warning required|
|Nestle Holdings, Inc.||Nestle Crunch Milk Chocolate with Crisped Rice||No warning required*|
|Newman’s Own Organics- The Second Generation, Inc.||Newman’s Own Organics The Second Generation Super Dark Chocolate Premium Organic Chocolate 70% Cocoa||Lead and Cadmium*|
|Russell Stover Candies, LLC||Russell Stover Milk Chocolate Break-Apart Bunny||No warning required*|
|See’s Candies, Inc.||See’s Candies Premium Extra Dark Chocolate Bar 62% Cacao||Lead and Cadmium*|
|See’s Candies, Inc.||See’s Candies 4.5 oz Sitting Rabbit Dark Chocolate||Lead*|
|Starbucks Corporation||Starbucks Dark Chocolate covered grahams||No warning required*|
|Taza Chocolate||Taza Wicked Dark 95% Stone Ground Organic Chocolate||Cadmium*|
|Taza Chocolate||Taza Mexicano Super Dark Direct Trade 85% Dark||Lead and Cadmium|
|The Hershey Company||Hershey’s Kisses Milk Chocolate||No warning required|
|The Hershey Company||Reese’s Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups||No warning required|
|The Kroger Co.||Private Selection 72% cacao Dark Chocolate Swiss Bar||Lead and Cadmium|
|Theo Chocolate||Theo Organic Fair Trade Pure 85% Dark Chocolate||Cadmium*|
|Trader Joe’s Company||Trader Joe’s Dark Chocolate Bar Toffee With Walnuts and Pecans (70% cacao)||Lead|
|Trader Joe’s Company||Trader Joe’s Dark Chocolate 73% Cacao Super Dark||Lead and Cadmium*|
|Trader Joe’s Company||Trader Joe’s The Dark Chocolate Lover’s Chocolate Bar 85% Cacao||Lead and Cadmium*|
|Trader Joe’s Company||Trader Joe’s Swiss 72% Cacao Dark Chocolate||Lead*|
|Trader Joe’s Company||Trader Joe’s Pound Plus 72% Cacao Dark Chocolate||Lead*|
|Trader Joe’s Company||Trader Joe’s Pound Plus- Dark Chocolate||Lead*|
|Trader Joe’s Company||Trader Joe’s Single Origin Chocolate Passport Tanzania 73% Cacao||Lead and Cadmium*|
|Trader Joe’s Company||Trader Joe’s Single Origin Chocolate Passport Sao Tome 70% Cacao||Lead*|
|Trader Joe’s Company||Trader Joe’s Single Origin Chocolate Passport Papua New Guinea 70% Cacao||Lead and Cadmium*|
|Trader Joe’s Company||Trader Joe’s Single Origin Chocolate Passport Dominican Republic 70% Cacao||Lead and Cadmium*|
|Trader Joe’s Company||Trader Joe’s Single Origin Chocolate Passport Ghana 70% Cacao||Lead*|
|Trader Joe’s Company||Trader Joe’s Single Origin Chocolate Passport Venezuela 70% Cacao||Lead and Cadmium*|
|Trader Joe’s Company||Trader Joe’s Single Origin Chocolate Passport Ecuador 66% Cacao||Lead and Cadmium*|
|Trader Joe’s Company||Trader Joe’s Single Origin Chocolate Passport Peru 60% Cacao||Lead and Cadmium*|
|Vosges, Ltd.||Wild Ophelia All Natural New Orleans Chili Dark Chocolate Bar (70% cacao)||Lead|
|Whitman’s Candies, Inc.||Whitman’s Solid Milk Chocolate Rabbit||No warning required*|
|Whole Foods Market, Inc.||Whole Foods 72% cacao Organic Dark Chocolate & Almond Tanzania Schoolhouse Project||Lead and Cadmium|
|Whole Foods Market, Inc.||365 Everyday Value Organic Dark Chocolate Coconut 56% Cacao||Lead and Cadmium*|
What can you do?
Clearly, there is a need for high quality chocolate that will actually benefit your body instead of damaging it.
Thankfully, several companies have stepped up and developed chocolate treats that are made from organic, real ingredients.
These companies offer clean alternatives to most favorites.
They are: Alter EcoSjaaks Organic ChocolatesUnReal CandyJustin’sSun CupsTheo ChocolateEqual Exchange ChocolateChocolove’s Organic BarsSalazon Chocolate Co.
Green & Black’s Organic The next time you’re ready to indulge in a sweet, chocolatey treat, choose one that will both satisfy your craving and provide wonderful nutrients!
Have you eaten any of these chocolates before and suffered from any digestive issues like, gas, constipation indigestion, go to the next page and learn about the 3 tips to heal your digestive system…
About the Author:
Emma Deangela is the best selling author of The Alkaline Diet Program and 80/20 Fat Loss. She has helped over tens of thousands of men and women to lose weight and transform their health with sound nutrition advice. Check out her 4 foods to never eat for breakfast video to lose more than 18 lbs in 3 weeks.
What are your favorite chocolates? Do you eat any of these brands?
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