Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Chocolate: Winter Weather E.R. Medicinal Cure-All

By Cal Orey,
The Writing Gourmet
During late December 2011 thanks to a snowstorm, the lights went out at Lake Tahoe. Think no electricity, no TV or Internet, ice dams, a cold waterbed, aquarium fish with dead filters, and good, fresh food going bad. On the upside, Lindts Lindor Dark Chocolate Truffles (two packages) helped get me through the event. Yes, the sierra did get a good share of heavy, wet snow but it seems light years ago. As the Midwest and Northeast deal with the scourge of snowstorms (yes, I predicted this would happen in my 2011 Earth Changes Forecast in the January issue of Oracle 20/20 Magazine; "I Survived a Three Day Power Outage," February issue), having chocolate on hand can make the ordeal a bit sweeter.
In my book The Healing Powers of Chocolate (Kensington), I include 50 A-Z Chocolate Home Cures . Known as Mother Nature's "food of the gods," the medicinal benefits of chocoate were recognized as far back as 4000 years ago. Today, chocolatiers to medical doctors know it can relieve a host of ailments, including depression, fatigue, pain and PMS, as well as up your sex drive!

And these woes--and other pesky problems--can hit you if you're dealing with a snowstorm (or not). If you're snowed in, suffering from cabin fever, need energy to shovel the white stuff, or want to calm high anxiety--chocolate can be your best friend.
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What Chocolate Rx to Use: Chocolate bars, cocoa powders, pistoles, and chocolates can all come to the rescue. Think dark chocolate (60 to 70 percent cocoa content) and in moderation. (Shelf life varies but usually up to one year if stored in a cool place. Truffles are an exception.)

Why You'll Like It: If you are waiting for a snowstorm to end, having chocolate can help uplift your spirits, calm your nerves, and keep your mind alert. If you're stuck in a motel or your own home--grab the medicinal cure-all and a few bites will take you to warm and friendly chocolate heaven. (You can give thanks to its super compounds, including serotonin, PEA, theobromine, and tryptophan.)

Meanwhile, if you're not affected by the snowstorm of 2011, it's a good time to stock up on chocolate so you'll have it at all times. No need to go for the high end off the charts in price chocolate (especially during a chilling recession "recovery")--premium brands at your local grocery store or online can do the job when Old Man Winter makes our lives more challenging.

My Favorite Budget-Friendly Choco Brands

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