Let’s say, this is winter, and it’s cold outside, or maybe you just want to warm yourself after a cold night, then sipping a cup of hot chocolate while resting your body near a fireplace is one of the best thing you can do. Hot chocolate is a heated drink that usually consist of shaved chocolate or cocoa powder and milk. Additional sugar or other sweetener may also be added. It is a popular drink in some countries, e.g. Mexico, United States, and Canada.
In those countries, hot chocolate tend to be served in instant form and therefore thinner than its European version. In Europe, hot chocolate is served in very thick condition due to the use of cornstarch. In Latin America countries, hot chocolate is served in many ways and some toppings such as, cheese, marshmallow, whipped cream, or solid chocolate is often included. In general, hot chocolate has been traditionally associated with winter, cold weather, and dessert in some Western countries. This is due to extremely low temperature, thus sipping hot chocolate is a relaxing way to warm your body.
As has already been said, hot chocolate is often served instantly in America and Canada (and in other Northern America countries as well), this means there are companies who produce instant packed hot chocolate. Thus, many brands of hot chocolate appear in markets. One of those brands is Swiss Miss.
Swiss Miss™ is an American hot chocolate and other chocolate products brand sold by ConAgra Brands. This company has three different variation of hot chocolate. The description says first variant of chocolate is available in regular and contains no sugar and with optional small marshmallow included, the second named Great Start Cocoa is rich in essential 15 Vitamins and Minerals, and lastly the third is called Pick-Me-Up with 67 mg of caffeine or packet. Initially, in the 1950s, the drink only available on aircraft and sold to the passengers. Once it became popular, the company began to sell the product in grocery stores. (Also read : Health Benefits of Hot Chocolate before Bed)
This Swiss Miss™ hot chocolate is said to be advantageous for our health, especially the Great Start Cocoa variant which is nutritionally richer than other two variants. This is rather true according to history, because hot chocolate has been valued as a medicine as well as a drink in 16th to 19th century. Well, this is a good news for you who favour this hot chocolate as your comfort drink. You can get to taste this delicious drink, as well as gain its health benefits. So, continue reading to find out more about this hot chocolate brand.
NUTRITIONAL VALUE OF SWISS MISS HOT CHOCOLATE
Every 100 g of Swiss Miss hot chocolate contains these chemical substances :
- 322.168 kJ (77.000 kcal) Energy
- 10.74 g Carbohydrates
- 9.66 g Sugars
- 1 g Dietary fiber
- 2.34 g Fat
- 1.431 g Saturated Fat
- 0.078 g Trans Fat
- 0.677 g Monounsaturated Fat
- 0.084 g Polyunsaturated Fat
- 3.52 g Protein
- 51 μg (6%) Vitamin A equivalent
- 176 IU Vitamin A
- 0.039 mg (3%) Thiamine (B1)
- 0.182 mg (15%) Riboflavin (B2)
- 0.133 mg (1%) Niacin (B3)
- 0.04 mg (3%) Vitamin B6
- 5 μg (1%) Folate (B9)
- 0.49 μg (20%) Vitamin B12
- 0.2 mg (0%) Vitamin C
- 1.1 μg (7%) Vitamin D
- 45 IU (8%) Vitamin D
- 0.03 mg (0%) Vitamin E
- 0.2 μg (0%) Vitamin K
- 114 mg (11%) Calcium
- 0.42 mg (3%) Iron
- 23 mg (6%) Magnesium
- 105 mg (15%) Phosphorus
- 197 mg (4%) Potassium
- 44 mg (3%) Sodium
- 0.63 mg (7%) Zinc
- 82.45 g Water
- 2 mg Caffeine
- 8 mg Cholesterol
*all percent values are based on US recommendations for adults
As you can see above, Swiss Miss™ hot chocolate contains a lot of Vitamins and Minerals. This might indicate valuable medical advantages it can provide. (See also : Benefits of Eating Dark Chocolate for Diabetics) These are the health benefits of Swiss Miss Hot Chocolate :
1. It may help prevent cancer
Based on some studies, it has been found that Swiss Miss™ hot chocolate contains high level of antioxidants including Vitamin A and Vitamin C. Those antioxidants will help to prevent cancer by removing free radicals in your body. Also, skin that almost empty of free radicals usually looks fresh and healthy. (Recommended : Health Benefits of Papaya Leaves for Cancer)
2. It can help ease digestion
Swiss Miss™ hot chocolate is mostly consist of water, high values of carbohydrates and dietary fiber. These three elements can help to ease and maintain the health of digestive system. A well-conditioned digestion lead to prevention of intestinal diseases, such as constipation, diarrhea, vomiting, and altered stool. But be aware that you should not rely solely on hot chocolate, your lifestyle and eating habits would also affect your digestive health.
3. It helps to treat fever
Centuries ago, a famous explorer, Francisco Hernandez wrote a paper about the use of chocolate drinks in fever treatment. The reason is cocoa, which is a solid raw form of hot chocolate before liquefied, contains a chemical called theobromine.
This chemical may helps the body to counteract symptoms of the fever and common colds. This is further studied by many experts. One of the studies conducted in 2012 found that chemicals in chocolate is an effective treatment for fever because they block the sensory nerves, which in turn stopping the cough reflex. (You may interested in: Benefits of Ginger Root for Colds and Flu)
4. It helps to treat liver diseases
There are many health benefits of Swiss Miss Hot Chocolate. Patients of liver diseases such as hepatitis, hepatomegaly, etc are often encouraged to have a high calories diet. Well, including Swiss Miss™ hot chocolate to one’s diet is a good treatment for those who are in need. Also, if you consume high calories food such as hot chocolate, you are protecting yourself from the virus infections that can cause liver diseases. In other words, hot chocolate also boosts your immune system.
Other physical habits can be a factor of receiving those diseases as well. So, take care of your habit and try not to depend on medication only.
5. It reduces the risk of cardiovascular (heart) diseases
Swiss Miss™ hot chocolate is rich in antioxidants, which means it can reduce the risk of getting heart diseases. It also contains flavonol, which can maintain and improve the blood flow by help expanding the vessel. Flavonols found in hot chocolate also helps balancing levels of eicosanoids and reduce the increase of blood platelet. This occurrences, in turn, will benefits the blood circulation and maintain a healthy heart. (You may want to read : Benefits of Honey for Heart Disease)
CAUTIONS IN USING SWISS MISS™ HOT CHOCOLATE
Drinking hot chocolate has been linked to some negative effects, as the drink contains high level of sugar, fats, and hydrogenated oils. As a result, hot chocolate is not recommended for weight loss and diabetic person.