Post-pandemic, the importance of health, both mental and physical is at its peak. Everyone appreciates the necessity of protecting your well-being, thus we know that simple pleasures such as hot chocolate can make a big difference. However, at 80NU we didn’t want to increase the sugary and indulging chocolate products currently on the market. Instead, we wanted to create a hot chocolate that combines both luxury and indulgence, as well as health and well-being.
Luxury and indulgence
Typically, the standard of hot chocolate available on the market ranges dramatically. The most common milk chocolate-based ones are often overly sweet and very cloying, on the other side of the spectrum, dark chocolate hot chocolates have been criticised for being bitter and gritty. Finding a hot chocolate with the perfect level of sweetness and a low percentage of sugar is becoming increasingly difficult. However, by increasing the cocao percentage, we can decrease the sugars and the nasties. Here at 80NU we have managed to create a non-bitter, luxury dark hot chocolate. You might wonder what the reason for using dark chocolate is, however, if you look at the abundance of benefits that a high cocao percentage brings, I'm sure you’ll realise why.
Mental Health and wellbeing
With chocolate ranging from white, milk to dark, the sweetness and nutritional benefits range dramatically. Most hot chocolates which are milk chocolate-based, average a much higher percentage of sugar than dark chocolate alternatives. For example, a small hot chocolate from a high street cafe can contain on average nearly five teaspoons (20g) of sugar, whereas hot chocolate from 80Noirultra only contains 2g and does not include the usual bitterness of dark chocolate. These extra calories can increase your chances of weight gain and in turn, heart disease. Thus, we felt avoiding all the usual nasties when formulating our recipe was essential. It has been shown that dark chocolate with cocao over 70 percent is ideal for health and nutritional benefit, thus we created a 80.3% cocao dark hot chocolate. So rather than a cloying sweetness, this recipe is pure chocolatey goodness.
Additionally, cocao has now been termed a ‘superfood’, so to use such a high percentage of this was an easy choice. It has many benefits that can attribute to your mental well-being. These include increasing our serotonin, as well as dopamine ( i.e. the ‘happy hormone’ ) levels in the brain. Dopamine has a role in the brain’s ‘reward centre’, and thus influences motivation, mood, and memory. Serotonin on the other hand regulates feelings of happiness and anxiety. So feel calm and tranquil when immersing yourself in the decadent notes of dark chocolate.
So what does this all mean for us? Considering the start of the pandemic was roughly four years ago, everything since seems to be zipping past us at 1000mph, and with raising concerns globally, we have found a bit of magic that can slow everything down for 5 minutes to recalibrate your nervous system and reset your mood. With our dark chocolate recipe, we have formed a way to boost your energy, indulge in luxury and relax and restore, without any sugary downsides or unhealthy additives. Better yet, this can now all be achieved in the luxury of your own home. So instead of receiving a heavy bill from your local store, or ingesting all the nasties in fast food stuffing, turn to 80NU where everything is hand-made to taste delicious as well as to improve the well-being of all chocolate lovers.
Written by Maddy Lovatt