health

5 reasons why you should eat the damn chocolate this Easter.

300 calories of goodness, per bun.

Over the long weekend, I plan to eat my way through several Crunchie chocolate bunnies (over 800 calories each), a few of those mini Cadbury easter eggs (about 100 calories each even though they’re only mini) and about half of a Nigella chocolate cake with chocolate ganache topping (probably about 6 million calories).

Oh, and I think I will have chocolate chip hot cross buns for breakfast, too. 300 calories a pop.

And you know what?  I will regret nothing.

It’s Easter – the one time of year that we see those delicious chocolate hot cross buns and Crunchie bunnies in the shops. The one holiday where presents aren’t expected, unless they’re in chocolatey form.

And over the next four days, I’m going to eat ALL THE CHOCOLATE, and I’m not going to feel bad about it. I plan to let go of all chocolate-associated guilt.

Here are five reasons why you should also put away that chocolate guilt and just eat the damn bunny…

1. It’s delicious.

There’s a reason why people love chocolate. It’s damn tasty. And there are SO many good Easter egg options on the shelves. How about that Lindt egg with the soft centre? How about that Humpty Dumpty one that comes with Smarties in the middle? How about the little Malteser bunny? Sign. Me. Up. For. Everything.

Note: Do yourself a favour and buy the good-quality stuff so you’re not resorting to munching on those super-crappy cheapo eggs that your kid’s school gave out for freesies at the end of term. The kids can have them. They can’t even tell the difference – to them, it’s all chocolate and therefore worthy of being eaten.

Choose quality chocolate in small portions, so you get the yummy taste without making yourself sick.

2)   It’ll prevent binging later.

The brain is a funny thing. It’s so much more likely to want something that it can’t have. So if you tell yourself that you absolutely can’t eat any Easter chocolate this year, you’ll be more likely to find yourself binging on every little egg you can find when the kids are in bed and your partner has his back turned.

Allow yourself to eat chocolate throughout the weekend and it will most likely prevent the all-out binge that comes with completely depriving yourself.

3) Why should kids have all the fun?

Seriously – life gets so serious as soon as we hit puberty. Remember the days of getting super excited about the Easter Bunny coming to visit? Remember the days of racing around the backyard in super-competitive Easter egg hunts? Remember consuming so much chocolate that you felt like you’d be lying down in bed for days?

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Embrace your inner child this weekend. Have some fun for four days – you have the other 361 to eat healthy.

So go participate in an egg hunt and then go home and eat the deliciousness. Let go of your worries and don’t guilt yourself. It’s what you would have done as a kid.

4) Life is short.

That’s right. Life passes us in the blink of an eye. It’s far too short to spend an entire weekend feeling bad about the chocolate you’re eating.

You’re not going to put on a lot of weight because of one day or one weekend of indulgence. You’re not going to ruin your healthy eating stint forever by nibbling on hot cross buns for a few days. Honestly, the worst that can happen is that you enjoy the treats on offer for the weekend – and then gear back into your healthy, everything-in-moderation eating when it’s all over.

I don’t want to be a total downer, but in this life, we don’t know anything FOR SURE. How many more Easters can you confidently say that you’re going to enjoy? That’s right – you have no idea. So enjoy this one while you have it.

2)   It’s actually good for you. Yes, really.

It’s good for you, you know.

If you have a taste for dark chocolate, and stick to the 70% and over cocoa stuff, you could actually be improving your health.

A Monash University study recently discovered that regular consumption of dark chocolate is good for your heart – it could lower the risk of strokes and heart attacks. It has also been found to improve blood flow and help protect your skin from UV rays.

Accredited practicing dietitian Amy Vero told us that dark chocolate is lower in fat and higher in antioxidants, “so always opt for dark chocolate if you can.”

Even if you’re not a dark chocolate fan? Milk chocolate still has a relatively low glycaemic index than other sugary treats, therefore having a more favourable effect on blood sugar and insulin. Plus it’s a good source of calcium, as the lower cocoa-rich bars have more dairy in them.

Need any more reasons to chow down this weekend? Yeah, I didn’t think so.

Have you sworn off chocolate this Easter, or will you be nibbling on eggs with pride?

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