One of my fibromyalgia main symptoms is chronic fatigue. At it’s best, my entire body feels heavy and aches. At it’s worst, I feel like I’m trying to run through quicksand which is up to my eyebrows . . . even when I’m sitting down. I sleep 8 – 10 hours every night and wake up every morning feeling exhausted and achy. Not a very pretty picture . . . However, I’m one of the lucky ones who is able to function and not incapacitated.
Because of the chronic fatigue I’m always on the alert for things that may help . . . and here’s my favorite . . .
Scientists recommend eating chocolate for tired people.
Few know that the feeling of chronic fatigue is the fact that the body makes negligibly small amount of the hormone serotonin, responsible for feelings of joy and happiness.
American scientists conducted a study and found out which product can best produce serotonin and help to cope with chronic fatigue:
Everyone knows that chocolate improves mood, because it improves the production of serotonin.
It turns out, “. . . it is bitter chocolate – just 50 grams of this delicacy, is capable of preventing physical and emotional exhaustion, and to help cope with fatigue.”
To establish the production of serotonin in your body, people need to eat every day half tiles of dark chocolate for two months.
Tallulah controls my atrial fibrillation so it’s not fibrillating. Naturally, I’m always interested in heart research and I’m heartened to read about this! (pun intended)
Eating chocolate has been tied to a reduced risk of heart disease. Now scientists have uncovered how strong this link is.
“Using data from a large Danish health study, researchers have found an association between chocolate consumption and a lowered risk for atrial fibrillation, the irregular heartbeat that can lead to stroke, heart failure and other serious problems. The study is in Heart.”
“Scientists tracked diet and health in 55,502 men and women ages 50 to 64. They used a well-validated 192-item food-frequency questionnaire to determine chocolate consumption. During an average 14 years of follow-up, there were 3,346 diagnosed cases of atrial fibrillation.”
“After controlling for total calorie intake, smoking, alcohol consumption, body mass index and other factors, they found that compared with people who ate no chocolate, those who had one to three one-ounce servings a month had a 10 percent reduced relative risk for atrial fibrillation, those who ate one serving a week had a 17 percent reduced risk, and those who ate two to six a week had a 20 percent reduced risk.”
“Dark chocolate with higher cocoa content is better, according to the lead author, Elizabeth Mostofsky, an instructor at Harvard, because it is the cocoa, not the milk and sugar, that provides the benefit.”
“You can’t have as much chocolate as you want,” she said, “and then ignore everything we know about healthy diet and physical activity.”
Ms. Mostofsky is a bit of a spoil sport. But I’m going for a 20% reduced risk so Tallulah Pacehead can chill.
Feeding Peggy and Judy brain healthy food is my mission. They are getting old . . .er and need all the encouragement they can get from me to eat healthy. I have a lot of recipes and let them pick which ones they want me to make for them.
I suspect they choose chocolate so they could have it all to themselves.* They insist chocolate is not healthy for me . . . just for them . . .
I tweaked the original recipe to make it even MORE tasty.
Espresso Brownie Cake
Brain Healthy Ingredients:
Cinnamon – contains large amounts of highly potent polyphenol antioxidants.
Different groups of researchers have shown that cinnamon may prevent the formation of both the plaques and the tangles found in the Alzheimer’s brain.
Dark chocolate & Cocoa – rich in flavonoids compounds that have been linked to improved cognitive performance in older adults. Studies have shown that cocoa flavanols improve performance in healthy adults during sustained mental effort and may also protect against stroke.
Coffee – contains anti-inflammatory polyphenols. Many controlled trials in humans show that coffee improves various aspects of brain function. This includes memory, mood, vigilance, energy levels, reaction times and general cognitive function
A single cup of coffee contains:
Riboflavin (Vitamin B2): 11% of the RDA.
Pantothenic Acid (Vitamin B5): 6% of the RDA.
Manganese and Potassium: 3% of the RDA.
Magnesium and Niacin (B3): 2% of the RDA.
1 cup flour
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter (I didn’t have enough butter so I added coconut butter)
1/2 cup strong coffee (I didn’t have espresso coffee so I made it twice)
3 tablespoons unsweetened organic cocoa powder
1/4 cup buttermilk (I didn’t have buttermilk, so I made sour milk adding a tsp of white vinegar to the milk.)
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup chopped dark chocolate (I didn’t have enough dark chocolate so I added semi-sweet)
Heat oven to 400. Spray an 8 or 9 inch square pan with non-stick cooking spray and set aside.
Combine flour and sugar in a mixing bowl
Heat butter, espresso, and cocoa in a saucepan and bring to a boil.
Pour cocoa mixture over flour and sugar and mix.
Add buttermilk, egg, baking soda, vanilla, and cinnamon and mix to combine.
Stir in chocolate pieces.
Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for 20-25 minutes. Remove from oven and cool. Garnish with powdered sugar before serving if desired.
P.S. Peggy and Judy said the cake was good but after eating several pieces decided it needed more chocolate chips. So they poured chocolate chips over the cake.
P.P.S. Peggy and Judy said the cake was good but after eating several pieces with the extra chocolate chips decided it needed ice cream. I’m afraid there wasn’t enough brain healthy cinnamon or coffee in the cake because they went to the store to buy ice-cream and haven’t been seen since.
*P.P.P.S. I found crumbs on the floor (it’s humiliating what I have to endure) and thought it delicious. You can eat it on a plate with a fork but I recommend using just your tongue.