Scientists Invent ‘Healthy’ Chocolate Made Out Of Fruit

By Amir Khan on August 14, 2012 12:38 PM EDT

Chocolate
Do you have a sweet tooth, but are afraid of a growing waistline? There may be a new treat that's perfect for you. (Photo: Creative Commons)

Do you have a sweet tooth, but are afraid of a growing waistline? There may be a new treat that's perfect for you. Scientists created a new chocolate bar that may actually be good for you, according to a new study, published in the Journal of Material Chemistry.

While studies have shown that small amounts of dark chocolate can be beneficial, it comes with large amounts of sugar, saturated fat and oil. Researchers replaced the fatty cocoa butter and milk fat with fruit juice to make a "healthy" chocolate bar. But getting it to taste and feel like a real chocolate bar was difficult.

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"Everyone loves chocolate - but unfortunately we all know that many chocolate bars are high in fat.," ," Dr. Stefan Bon, study author and a researcher at the University of Warwick, said in a statement, "However, it's the fat that gives chocolate all the indulgent sensations that people crave. "The silky smooth texture and the way it melts in the mouth but still has a 'snap' to it when you break it with your hand."

Getting that texture in the new chocolate bar was difficult, researchers said. They created an emulsion by replacing the fat with juice droplets measuring 50 microns in diameter.

Replacing the fat with fruit juice gave the chocolate a fruity taste, but researchers said it should be possible to replace the fruit juice with some water mixed with ascorbic acid.

"Our study is just the starting point to healthier chocolate - we've established the chemistry behind this new technique but now we're hoping the food industry will take our method to make tasty, lower-fat chocolate bars," Bon said.

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