There is probably no child or adult in the world who do not like the taste of chocolate. It is a real type of comfort food that can even boost energy a bit and improve your overall mood. But like all things taken orally that can be beneficial for our health, chocolate has to be consumed moderately as well. Therefore, it is very important that parents introduce their children to this tasty snack carefully.
Benefits of Choco: How Much Chocolate is Healthy for Our Kids
Careful with caffeine
The first obvious effect chocolate can have on kids is the boost of energy since chocolate contains caffeine. Therefore, if you want to treat your child with chocolate sweet, do not offer it after dinner, because the caffeine can trouble the child’s sleep schedule. Caffeine is also a diuretic that can cause more often need to urinate so definitely reserve chocolate for your child during the day. An ounce of chocolate contains 5mg of caffeine and if you do not feed your child with other foods and drinks that contain it, there will be no negative consequences.
Control sugar and fat
It is common knowledge that chocolate is full of sugar and fat and this is the main reason why it should not be consumed excessively. Intake of too much sugar and fat is not good for anyone and especially not small and sensitive children’s stomachs. On average, one chocolate bar contains 230 calories and 13g of fat while recommended intake of empty calories for kids is 135 a day. Therefore, it might be better to offer homemade chocolate treats such as chocolate crescent rolls or brownie cupcakes instead of a regular chocolate bar because you will be able to control the amount of sugar your child consumes. Moreover, using dark chocolate for preparation of sweets will have a lot more health benefits for the child while the strong taste of dark chocolate will satisfy their need for sweets quicker and easier. Also, an interesting taste and look of personalized chocolates made of healthy ingredients will lessen the child’s desire for fattening and unhealthy milk chocolate bars.
Milk and chocolate
Another important aspect of chocolate is its immense help when trying to get your child to drink more milk. Milk is full of calcium which is essential for proper bone development and healthy growth of a child so if a kid refuses to drink it due to the dislike of taste, adding some chocolate can improve the taste and make it more likeable for a child to drink. Still, chocolate in any form should not be given to children below the age of 2 years, and only slowly introduced in daily diet in order to carefully observe the child’s reactions to caffeine and some possible allergies that involve lactose intolerance and cocoa sensitivity.
In order to get all the benefits and satisfaction from chocolate without the risk of obesity, diabetes, headaches, irritated tummy, etc. daily intake of chocolate for children should be less than 50g. It is necessary to constantly explain the dangers of excessive chocolate consumption to a child and provide the kids with healthy chocolate alternatives so that they would not feel constant desire for sugar.