This blog is roughly 9 months old now and until I started writing it, I was a social media illiterate. Dinosaur-like, I didn’t do Facebook and certainly didn’t do Instagram or Twitter. So it’s been a steep learning experience that I am sure must have boosted my brain's neural passageways most successfully. Who needs to learn Mandarin or Russian to get them firing on all cylinders?! Just try setting up a website and blog by yourself.
Anyhow, one of the site tools that I have learnt to love is an analytics option that tells me how many people read each piece I write. And the top favourite of all time (or all nine months so far) is this chocolate and weight loss article. Not mobile phones, not detox, not stem cells or mercury, or all the things I find most fascinating, but chocolate. It got nearly twice as many hits as anything else, closely followed by enemas!
Today, I am sitting in Costa Rica, centre of pure, hand made organic chocolate, with one of my daughters, here on spring break. Costa Rica is not only one of the most gentle and green, luscious, flower-filled countries I have been to, but it is the king of chocolate plantations, and chocolate is everywhere around me. So I feel duty bound to look into the beneficial effects of chocolate in greater depth on behalf of such a large majority of my readers!
I came across something rather unexpected where we're staying. An exfoliating, massage and facial treatment all done with chocolate. Does that sound like something entirely sybaritic? And irresistible?
The great thing about writing a health blog is that it is always my duty to try healthy things that I have never done before - and luckily, I have never been smeared all over with chocolate. So it must be time to tick that box.
And I am not talking your average petrol station chocolate here, but fresh chocolate, straight from the trees and bushes it’s grown on - artisanal chocolate - pretty much the same as being soaked in a giant cup of Rococo’s miraculous hot chocolate drink. Imagine!
So, I signed up for it. I can say that it was truly one of the most remarkable experiences I can remember. And not only because of the delight of being smothered in the stuff. I can report back that surprisingly, it exfoliates beautifully, smooth and creamy though it is, and that a massage in chocolate is a wondrous thing.
But the bucket list bit - why you really, really have to experience it one time before you die - is the smell. The delicious, sensuous, rich chocolate smell that overpowers your senses, permeating every cell of your being - literally. It was just as I would imagine Charlie (and remember his name was Bucket too, so there is clearly a message and a connection here) felt when he stepped into the magic of Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory for the first time. It wasn’t the extraordinary chocolate lakes and rivers, flowers and trees he could see in front of him, or the taste of the different remarkable products that overwhelmed him but the fabulousness of the smell of fresh chocolate in the air that sank into his soul.
And from a health perspective too, a chocolate massage is an excellent thing. It releases a torrent of beta endorphins, neurotransmitters that are stronger in their effects than morphine. They block your pain receptors, flooding you with a sensation of pure happiness, and on top of all that, give you a smooth, relaxed and rejuvenated skin.
Who could ask for more?
Add chocolate massage to your list - you really won’t regret it.
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Written by health advocate Sara Davenport, founder of one of the UK's leading breast cancer charities, Breast Cancer Haven. With over twenty years' experience in holistic health, Sara's digital dose of wellness teaches you to listen to your body, tweak your lifestyle and improve your health.
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