Sharing food, making meals and baking, has long been a form of sharing love with special people in your life. Did you know that historically, some foods have been symbols of “Love”? We are going to share a few love symbols that might surprise you and one that is no big secret. What you may learn is that each of these love foods has health benefits that can be shared year round, not just on Cupid’s day. Read on to learn how food is love!
This little seeded beauty is also known as the “apple of love”. It was the base of an aphrodisiac wine made by the ancient Greeks. It is seen as a symbol of unity, friendship and brotherly love. The vibrant ruby red seed color is from polyphenols, which are powerful antioxidants. The juice of a single pomegranate has more than 40 percent of your daily requirement of vitamin C and is a powerful anti-inflammatory. To learn about more of the benefits of this little ball of love, check out this article from Medical News Today.
Lemons aren’t just good for lemonade; they provide a plethora of health benefits in a bright little package. From helping with acne and detoxifying your liver to lowering anxiety and improving your mood, the lemon is a powerhouse of health goodness.
Find out how lemons can boost DNA repair at nutritionfacts.org.
In addition to health benefits, the lovely lemon has long been a symbol of eternal love, purification and friendship. In Greek mythology lemons symbolized richness and love. Adding a bit of lemon to tea or water makes for a refreshing drink and you get a healthy dose of vitamin C. Maybe you are looking for a sweet treat to make for Valentine’s Day? Try these vegan lemon bars and impress someone special!
We couldn’t leave off the most popular Valentine’s Day gift; chocolate! The Aztecs believed that chocolate was an aphrodisiac and throughout Europe in the 19th century, “drinking cocoa” was prized as an “elixir of love.” Today, the many variations of chocolate that a consumer can choose from is astonishing.
Cacao nibs are chocolate in the buff… just the cocoa beans crushed up with nothing added. All the chocolate candies you see in the store have various kinds of sugar and fat (sometimes even milk or milk fat) added. Most people don’t like cacao (or cocoa) without something sweet added. I personally like to use dates to sweeten cacao. Cacao itself does have a significant amount of fat. However, you can buy raw cacao powder which has had the cocoa butter removed, so it’s much lower in fat.
Health claims concerning chocolate abound online, sorting through the noise and claims can be tiring. Check out this podcast for fact-based commentary on chocolate. One interesting point made in the podcast is that you would have to eat 750 calories or 4.75 ounces of dark chocolate to get a heart healthy dose of flavinols, which is about 600 milligrams. That much chocolate packs at least 40 grams of fat! Yikes! I don’t think anyone would enjoy eating that much chocolate all at once. Chocolate is a treat and moderation is key; don’t be fooled by factoids thrown around online. Opt for raw cocoa powder for baking and indulge in the hard form of chocolate as a special treat. Here’s a Valentine’s idea; make a surprise dessert for dinner and see if anyone can guess the secret ingredient! Avocado chocolate mousse recipe. And maybe make a pan of these brownies for yourself (raw cocoa powder needed!) we won’t tell…
Wishing you a month of Love,