Thank you to all 34 diners who attended our ‘Pop Up’ on 22nd November.
Speaking of which, three fantastic events for you to visit this weekend:
Jane Barnes PhD BSc PGDip | Registered Nutritional Therapist and Health Coach
I sometimes think that I spend a lot of my life warning people about the dire consequences of eating the foods that they love and encouraging them to give up many of their regular indulgences……..so I am overjoyed to report the good news ‘Chocolate is officially good for you!’.
There is a caveat (yes, I know, there is always a catch) the chocolate must be dark chocolate containing at least 85% cocoa solids or more.
A recent randomized controlled trial (1) divided healthy subjects into 3 groups. One group ate 30g of 85% dark chocolate every day for 3 weeks. A second group ate 70% dark chocolate, and a control group ate no chocolate (spoiler alert - no wonder they turned out to be less happy!).
The 85% group (unlike the other two groups) significantly improved their mood scores when assessed using a standard mental health questionnaire and they also had significant changes in their gut microbes which may have explained the difference.
This study just adds to a long list of the purported health benefits for high cocoa content dark chocolate which contains several compounds (flavonoids, phytonutrients, polyphenols) that are commonly found in foods labelled ‘superfoods’ by marketing departments the world over.
Studies have described blood sugar modulating, cholesterol-lowering, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects as well as being linked to a lower risk of developing high blood pressure (2)(3).
Natural, unsweetened raw cocoa is one of the most powerful dietary antioxidants as assessed by the ORAC value (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity) and walks all over superfoods we traditionally think of as the cancer fighters and heart helpers:
USDA Database for the Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity (ORAC)
Now I don’t want to rain on the parade of those who enjoy milk chocolate, but I’m afraid that the evidence suggests that the high sugar and lower cocoa content does away with all the above benefits. As an ex-milk chocolate fiend, myself, you might like to consider following in my footsteps and undertaking some progressive training to increase your enjoyment of dark chocolate. It takes around 3 weeks for your taste buds to adapt to a big dietary change, so start by swapping your milk chocolate for 65% and gradually work your way up until you get to 85% or more.
Thank you to all 32 diners who attended our ‘Pop Up’ on 18th October. This was the first time that Three Storeys had held such an event but shows how wonderful this venue is for a variety of events. Thank you to Nicki for allowing us to run the event and to Chris at the Fine Fish Company for providing the amazing Salmon. I am sure that those of you who tasted it will agree it was excellent and worth reminding you that more high-quality fish available here - https://www.thefinefishcompany.co.uk/
Also, a big thanks to Vicky Keble-Williams for her generous donation of table flowers, they were a real delight! If you are interested Vicky is holding a workshop in December
The ‘Pop Up’ was such a huge success, that another one has been arranged and SOLD OUT to those who missed out on the first event. Such is its popularity; we may be forced to run another in January!
These Pop Ups are just part of a whole host of events planned at the Three Storeys throughout the Autumn. There will be an INSPIRED Exhibit featuring many of the artists involved with the project from Tuesday 12th October until Sunday 14th November
The exhibit is situated in the Café and free to visit.
If the weekends deluge was not enough to persuade you that winter is on its way, the clocks going back, and the longer darker nights will have no doubt convinced you.
For many this is not a welcome prospect as it leaves them open to “winter depression". More commonly known as SAD (Seasonal affective disorder), as the symptoms are usually more apparent and severe during this season.
Sunlight heighten the brain's production of the mood-enhancing chemical serotonin, consequently the more sunlight we are exposed too, the more serotonin we produce and vice versa!
With indifferent weather on the horizon for the next few months, plus the remnants of Covid restrictions forcing many people to work from home, getting into good habits and making the absolute best of the daylight hours available would be a wise choice.
To help keep you healthy we would thoroughly recommend a 'fake commute' to work. Fresh air, daylight and moderate exercise will help boost your immune system and your mood!
*(I must add that lots of preparation, reading and research had been carried out before hand, but as a student household we referred to these as ‘Lionel Richie’s’ after his 1983 hit All Night Long).
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