How I Won My Battle with Dark Chocolate

I’m sure I’m not alone when I say that I absolutely LOVE dark chocolate.

It helps that I know that dark chocolate is super rich in health-promoting polyphenols.

But what it comes down to is that I just love the stuff.

You may be surprised to hear then that I stay away from dark chocolate as much as I can.

Woman eating a big dark chocolate

I have gone years at a time without buying it.

“Why?” You ask.

Well, because I LOVE it so much. I can get into the habit of eating it every day. And even though the stuff is good for you, it still contains sugar.

But the real issue is that I become addicted. It is MY kryptonite.

I’ve realized that I do not like being beholden to any food.

It is very important to me that I feel like I’m in control of my eating choices, not the food!

And the truth is, I can easily avoid eating chocolate for years. Once I’m off of it, I rarely think about it.

But over this spring, a very dark spring for most of us, chocolate was calling my name.

I know it may be shocking to read about a nutritionist not eating a perfectly pristine diet. You may have an image of my having a natural ability to effortlessly follow said pristine diet, being impervious to any and all temptations. Maybe you think I just sail through life gravitating toward nutrient-dense foods and never once indulge in overeating or eating junk food.

Yeah, that’s definitely not the case.

It’s just as hard for me as everyone else.

I just have developed some really good habits over years of working at it.

But this winter, that chocolate got me.

It started innocently enough with my buying one bar a week of my favorite organic, Fair-Trade Certified, soy-free 80% chocolate.

I spread it out over the week, nibbling on a few bites a day.

Not a problem, right?

But with each passing week, as lockdown felt more and more oppressive, I started eating more.

Honestly, I didn’t care if it wasn’t great for me. I didn’t care that I was putting on a few pounds.

I didn’t care that I was losing control.

This kept on for awhile and I have absolutely zero regret or shame around it.

It is what it is.

But a few weeks ago I realized that I was no longer the one in control.

One day my husband, who has been doing all the shopping since lockdown, came home with 7 bars!

I immediately asked him why he bought so much! He answered that he was buying about 3 bars twice a week so why not just buy 7 so I don’t run out.

Well, let me tell you, seeing those 7 bars sitting in the cupboard was painful.

For the record, I finished all 7 of them. Without shame.

And then I just stopped asking him to buy the chocolate.

I went cold-turkey.

The first few days I missed it.

It had become my friend. Usually I would eat some mid-afternoon when I felt I needed a little treat. And again after dinner.

That was my pattern and it was nice.

But it had to go.

Why do I share this story with you?

Well, first of all, I want you to know that I am not perfect and neither is anyone else.

As a nutritionist and a coach my duty is to let the world know that perfect eating is not only unattainable, it is inadvisable.

There should be no shame in acting like a human.

The other reason is that I want to share with you the simple concepts I used to overcome my addiction (yes mental and physical addiction: sugar and caffeine are both addictive).

The first part of the strategy was to make it difficult to engage in the behavior I was trying to stop.

This is not rocket science but it is too often neglected under the guise of hanging in there or being tough. I wrote about setting up your environment for success last week.

I knew that if the chocolate was in the house I would eat it. There was no way I wasn’t.

I also knew that I wasn’t going to run out to the store to get it in a moment of weakness.


Well, this is the second part of my strategy.

Loss weight strategy

I knew that I wanted to change. I had a strong “WHY”.

For those of you struggling with making bad eating choices I can tell you that these 2 strategies, when used properly, are extremely powerful.

  • Set up your environment for success. Make it really hard to eat the chocolate (or whatever is your kryptonite).
  • Know what you want and WHY you want it. Make that “why” something really important to you.

And bam! I am completely off the stuff!

The first week was a little hard.

I’m in the second week right now and it’s easy but I still do get moments where I think, “Oh man, I would love some of the chocolate right now!”

But it’s not here so I move on.

I share my story because I hope it inspires you to make a positive change in your eating habits.

If you want to learn more about how to do that I recommend you check out Food Boss.

Food Boss is a health optimization and weight loss course I have created where I teach you these strategies and so many more just like this to help you reach your health and weight goals.

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