Chocolate & Your Health, A Guide For 2024 | #PodSaveChocolate

Chocolate & Your Health, A Guide For 2024 | #PodSaveChocolate

Episode 11 of #PodSaveChocolate features a look at chocolate and your health with ChocolateLife contributor and regular podcast guest Keith Ayoob.

When and Where to Watch

This episode airs live from 10:00 PST / 13:00 EST / 18:00 GMT on Tuesday, January 2nd, 2024.
Chocolate and Your Health in 2024 | #PodSaveChocolate
Episode 11 OverviewThe first of each year is a time when many of us take a look back at 2023 and make resolutions about what we want to change, achieve, or d…

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Episode 11 Overview

The first of each year is a time when many of us take a look back at 2023 and make resolutions about what we want to change, achieve, or do better in the coming year.

Often, those resolutions are health-related, and eating better and/or losing weight are very common promises we make to ourselves. Sometimes, these resolutions involve abstaining from consuming chocolate for one reason or another.

In the past few years there have been scares around heavy metals contamination that today’s guest, Keith Ayoob, and I have covered extensively. Keith, who is Professor Emeritus in Pediatric Nutrition at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in NYC, is a contributor to TheChocolateLife.

Keith Ayoob - The Chocolate Life
Keith Ayoob, Assoc. Prof. Emeritus of Pediatrics, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, NY City, who loves chocolate research. As a foodie, he searches out new artisan bars during his travels.

You can find links to all of Keith’s articles on this page.

One area Keith and I are going to be covering is a dietary mineral – iron, which is not well understood by the general public when it comes to the effects of chocolate on the absorption of iron in foods and supplements.

Do you have questions about chocolate and health you’d like to see covered in this episode? Keith and I will be answering your questions live. If you want to ask a question in advance post it in the comments below. (You must be a member to comment)

The following four research papers were mentioned in this episode.

“Opportunities and challenges in enhancing the bioavailability and bioactivity of dietary flavonoids: A novel delivery system perspective” (src: Science Direct).

“Flavonoid Bioavailability and Attempts for Bioavailability Enhancement” (src: NIH/National Library of Medicine).

“Influence of sugar type on the bioavailability of cocoa flavanols” (src: Cambridge University Press).

“Non-anaemic iron deficiency” (src: Australian Prescriber).

For coverage of cadmium and health previously reported on TheChocolateLife, search for ‘ cadmium ’ using Search (the magnifying glass icon) in the top navigation.

Fast, No Cooking Required, Delicious Hot Sauce Recipe

This recipe was invented by me. I use this instead of catsup/ketchup on just about everything in sight. It’s inexpensive, quick, and easy to make. It also adds fiber and essential nutrients into the diet in a fun way.


  • 1, 13oz can La Morena sliced pickled jalapeños
  • 1, 7 or 13oz can La Morena chipotles in adobo
  • 1, 14-15oz can crushed or diced fire-roasted tomatoes
  • 1, 14-15oz can black beans (draining is optional)
  • Optional: cocoa powder to taste (this adds depth and complexity – and fiber and antioxidants – to the sauce not necessarily adding chocolate cocoa flavor, but you do you)
  • Optional: fresh and/or roasted garlic to taste
  • Optional: fresh cilantro
  • Optional: other chili peppers, fresh or dried, to increase the heat
  • Optional: fresh lime wedges to taste (to increase the acidity and add some bitterness; or just lime juice to taste)


  • Dump all of the ingredients into a blender and blend thoroughly.
  • Pour into a storage container and keep in the fridge, where it will keep for weeks (longer than it takes me to finish a batch, anyway).


  • Chipotles are mesquite-smoked jalapeños and so are roughly the same heat level – and not all that hot in the grand scheme of things.
  • La Morena is the brand I prefer to use. You can use whole jalapeños but you should slice the stems off first as they don’t always get blended fully. This step adds work, which is why I prefer to use slices.
  • You can vary the heat and flavor of the sauce by using different sized cans of jalapeños and chipotles (e.g., 7oz of chipotles rather than 13oz). You can also find cans of pickled serranos which will result in a hotter sauce.
  • I tend to use the pickling liquid from the can of jalapeños and the aqua faba from the can of beans to rinse out the other cans rather than add water.
  • There should be no need to add salt. You can, which will raise the heat level in addition to enhancing the saltiness.

Serving Suggestions

  • Use like any other hot sauce – I use an old mustard squeeze bottle to portion out.
  • Put in a bowl and garnish with fresh cilantro. Finely diced onions can also be mixed in just before serving to add texture.

Episode Hashtags

#cocoa #cacao #cacau
#chocolate #chocolat
#PodSaveChocolate #PodSaveChoc #PSC
#LaVidaCocoa #TheChocolateLife

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