How Sweet, How Safe?

Mention chocolate and I bet a wide smile from cheek to cheek in return. It is amazing how a small piece of sweet can enhance one’s mood, improve health and also “settle scores” sometimes.

Remember the last time you had chocolate, was it a gift or a self treat? In any case we are certain it made the day much more bearable.

Chocolate is a type of confection made primarily out of cocoa. Cocoa or cocoa beans is the dried and fermented seed of the Theobroma Cacao out of which semi-finished products such as cocoa butter, cocoa liquor and cocoa powder are derived.

There are three (3) main types of chocolate. The most common and well patronized is the Milk Chocolate. Example of a milk chocolate bar is the GoldenTree Kingsbite which is produced from cocoa, milk, sweetener, etc.

Milk chocolate bars can be made more exciting by the introduction of flavours. Akuafo Bar and Oranco are lemon and orange flavoured milk chocolates found on the Ghanaian market.

Another type of chocolate loved by the elderly and health conscious individuals is Dark Chocolate.

It is important however to note that all the 3 types of chocolate are healthy and safe to consume.

It is however advisable to consume chocolate made with no cocoa butter substitute.

Cocoa contains rich antioxidants which scavenges free radicals thereby maintaining healthy and glowing skin. Aside a beautiful skin, the flavonoids in cocoa helps maintain a healthy heart and steady blood flow.

The cocoa content in chocolate determines how significantly one can reap these benefits. According to research, chocolate products with cocoa content of 70% and above provides substantial health benefits to the consumer.

Dark Chocolate is made up of cocoa and a sweetener. The higher the cocoa content, the lower the sweetness. Dark chocolate is loved by the older generation and health conscious individuals as that fraction of the market consume the product for its benefits and not just as a lifestyle.

The most popular dark chocolate brand on the Ghanaian market is the Tetteh Quarshie Bar (TQ Bar). In the past few years, the GoldenTree brand as part of efforts to provide its customers with a tasty treat whilst boosting good health, introduced the TQ Premium Dark Chocolates. With a cocoa content of 70% to 90%, consumers are in for a much more healthy treat.

The last type of chocolate which is barely known and now gaining grounds in the confectionery industry in Ghana is White Chocolate.

The fat extract from the cocoa bean in addition to other ingredients such as sweeteners and emulsifiers are used in white chocolate production.

The GoldenTree brand has been into production of white chocolate for many years. This chocolate is usually patronized by chocolate artisans and bakery shops in creating their own confections.

The company in recent times began commercialization and introduced the GoldenTree Premium White Chocolate which can be found in various supermarkets and malls.

How sweet, is safe for chocolate consumption?

Consuming high amount of sugar has been linked with many non-communicable diseases.

For chocolate to be classified as healthy and quality, it must be made from real cocoa beans and with no cocoa substitutes.

The easiest way to know if your favorite chocolate is a quality chocolate is by identifying any of these cocoa components amongst the first 3 items in the ingredients list.

  • Cocoa masse/ cocoa liquor
  • Cocoa butter
  • Cocoa powder

If your favorite chocolate bar contains more of anything else but cocoa, it may be time to make that switch.

Chocolate can be enjoyed as part of lifestyle or for health reasons. Having a product that achieves both targets is a plus.

In Ghana, one brand to go to for a quality and healthy chocolate treat is GoldenTree.

For a company that processes its own raw cocoa beans into confectionery products, one can be assured of a treat;

Sweet and Safe

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