I have always been a healthy eater, but when it comes to chocolate I don't have an off button. I have tried various methods to kick the habit; substituting with other foods, only buying 85% dark chocolate so I wouldn't eat as much, and going cold turkey. Substituting other foods never really cut it for me, I would always find myself calling my husband at the end of the day for an emergency chocolate stop on his way home with inducements like "Come home with chocolate and get lucky!". Oh, the shame. Buying 85% chocolate saw me start off well with only two squares at night but quickly progressed to two at breakfast, two after lunch, four after dinner and on a really bad day hiding in the pantry trying to sneak a couple while the kids weren't looking. I was out of control!
Now, don't get me wrong. Dark chocolate does have some great health benefits, as the team at I Quit Sugar recently blogged. But like anything, there can be too much of a good thing.
It wasn't until I decided to seriously reduce my sugar consumption and follow a JERF (just eat real food) approach that I really resolved my addiction. Sure, there were a few days of sugar withdrawal at the beginning, but the increase in energy and the absence of sugar cravings soon had chocolate far from my mind. I have now discovered new ways to get the occasional chocolate fix with nutrient dense delights such as chocolate coconut ice cream, handmade nutty chocolate and protein chocolate balls.
I promised one of my PT clients the recipe for my Chocolate Protein Balls, so here it is! The beauty of this recipe is that you can adjust the ingredients as you go to make your own creation. Don't have any LSA? Fine, leave it out or substitute with almond meal. Also, the kids will love making it and eating it. Enjoy!
Yummy Chocolate Protein Balls
I cup cashews (any type of nut will do. Macadamias are to die for)
1/4 cup desiccated coconut
4 medjool dates
2 tbls coconut oil
3 tbls raw cacao
2 tbls pure maple syrup (raw honey or rice malt syrup will also work)
1 tbls chia seeds
1 tsp vanilla essence
2 tbls LSA (ground linseed, sunflower and almond)
extra coconut or almond meal for rolling
1. Blend the nuts in a food processor until fine.
2. Add all other ingredients and process until combined.
3. Take a teaspoon full, roll it into a ball, roll in coconut.