What if you could eat chocolate with less fat? Cutting the fat in chocolate has actually been a much-studied challenge within the chocolate industry. New research published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America suggests that an electrical charge can transform chocolate into a lower fat version.
Chocolate is considered one of the most popular foods in the world. Unfortunately, many chocolate products are high in fat. Excessive consumption of high fat foods is thought to increase the risk of obesity.
Basically, by running liquid chocolate through an electric field, it can flow more easily and therefore not as much fat is needed to make the chocolate. The researchers from the physics department at Temple University in Philadelphia would suspend the solid cocoa in melted oil and fat. Some fat is needed to let the chocolate flow easily when processed, but an electric field will also encourage the flow of chocolate.
The electric field is thought to make tiny solid cocoa balls that clump into chains, which allows for easier flow during the production of the chocolate. Using that process, the researchers would decrease the fat in the chocolate between 10 to 20%.
Lead researcher Rongjia Tao found no difference in taste when the chocolate was treated with the electric field; however, others on the research team thought the new low-fat chocolate tasted even better than the higher fat chocolate.
However, it is important to note that the Mars chocolate company would partially fund the research. Basically, a chocolate company is funding research for chocolate that people trying to lose weight can eat guilt free. Most chocolate from conventional chocolate companies is loaded with added sugar and additives, which make the treat a poor choice, and taking out the fat of the chocolate likely won’t change that.
Just a thought: but there are many ways to lose weight other than through low-fat chocolate. Certain supplements can combine with exercise to complement a weight-loss protocol (i.e. essential fatty acids).
If you are going to eat chocolate on occasion, it is best to choose pure cacao chocolate. Remember having some fat in the diet is important. Healthy sources of fat like avocado or pure chocolate are necessary to help absorb fat-soluble vitamins: vitamin A, D, E, and K.
Sources for Today’s Article:
Ritter, M., “Sweet! Electrical trick may lead to less fat in chocolate,” Phys.org web site; June 20, 2016; http://phys.org/news/2016-06-sweet-electrical-fat-chocolate.html.
Tao, R., et al., “Electrorheology leads to healthier and tastier chocolate,” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 2016, doi: 10.1073/pnas.1605416113.
Balch, J., et al., Prescription for Natural Cures: A Self-Care Guide for Treating Health Problems with Natural Remedies Including Diet, Nutrition, Supplements, and Other Holistic Methods (Hoboken: John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2004), 410-416.