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Carob Versus Chocolate

Carob is an evergreen tree native to the eastern Mediterranean where it has been in cultivation for at least 4000 years. The fruit of carob is a pod, technically a legume . Pods are borne on the old stems of the plant on short flower stalks.

The dark-brown pods are not only edible, but also rich in sucrose (almost 40% plus other sugars) and protein (up to 8%). Moreover, the pod has vitamin A, B vitamins, and several important minerals. They can be eaten directly by livestock.

Carob is used as a chocolate substitute when the pods are ground into a flour that is a cocoa substitute. Although this product has a slightly different taste than chocolate, it has only one-third the calories (total 1595 calories per pound), is virtually fat-free (chocolate is half fat), is rich in pectin, is nonallergenic, has abundant protein, and has no oxalic acid, which interferes with absorption of calcium.

Carob flour is widely used in health foods for chocolate-like flavoring.

Although carob powder is lower in fat and naturally sweeter than cocoa powder, fat is added to turn carob powder into candy. Its total fat and calorie counts are usually the same as in chocolate. The difference: The cocoa butter added to chocolate bars is rich in stearic acid (a saturated fat which has been shown not to raise blood cholesterol levels), while any type of fat may be added to carob -- including artery-clogging palm kernel oil and coconut oil.


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Who am I?

My name is Anna.
I am a HUGE lover of Chocolate.
I eat it, I research it, and I live by it.

By day I am a dietician, ironically as it may seem.
By night, I am obsessed with the various aspects related to chocolate.

A Day Without Chocolate is like a day without Sunshine.


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