Life is like a hot chocolate, sometimes it is bitter and sometimes it is sweet. When life gets bitter we need to add sugar on it to make it taste better.
Sweetness in life can only be attained if you work hard. It is something that is not magical. You need to invest time and effort to succeed. As we go on with our journey, life will always be bitter. In other words, life will never be easy. That is why others give up before they reach their goal for whatever reason.
I was born in a poor family and almost all of my days were spent on the farm planting and watering vegetables. My parents work hard for our food and education. I am grateful that all of us finished a degree.
I remember the days when we ran out of rice and my parents had to borrow from our neighbor so that we have something to cook. Then, they would buy a can of sardines for all of us and they always choose the cheapest brand in order to save money.
It was hard to be indigent but we made it on top. Life really is like hot chocolate and there is no wonder it is the favorite of my family. There is only one hot chocolate that I know and that is our native tablea hot chocolate. It has an irresistible smell of pure chocolate and it tastes bitter if you do not add sugar into it. You can also add milk if you want it creamy.
Today, this healthy drink comes from different variations already and it can be found in fast-food restaurants, cafes, and grocery stores. It has been enjoyed by people around the globe.
The history of chocolate was in a liquid form. The chocolate bars that we see in the market today were only discovered sometime in the year 1847. Before it became popular, the Olmec civilization of southern Mexico was the first to roast the fruit from the cacao tree, grind it and mixed it with water and other ingredients.
This drink earned its popularity when it was used to aid morale and keep soldiers energized during the war. Even during the revolutionary war, the revolutionary soldiers had it in their rations.
Warriors in the past particularly the Aztecs, drink hot chocolate before going to battle and it was believed that hot chocolate has medicinal properties such that they dole out it to dying soldiers.
We all have different experiences in life. The ups and downs are part of it. What matters is we should always look at it in a positive way. As Tim Sharp once said, " life is spectacular. Forget the dark things. Take a drink and let time wash them away to where ever time washes away too.
I could still recall the time when a strong typhoon hit our place. I cannot anymore remember precisely when it was, but the memory of being together inside the house for a couple of days observing the heavy rain and wind blows outside are still fresh in my mind. Maybe because I felt the closeness of our family. We spent eating and drinking hot chocolate during those cold days.
The hot chocolate was perfect during that time to warm ourselves. It was also the ideal time to bond and share our stories. While it was happening, we tried to peep outside on a small hole from our window, and we could see the water rising from its average level. We could see our neighbors evacuating and transferring their things to a safe place.
When the typhoon ended, everything was not in order. It destroys house roofs, plants, and trees were lying on the street. A lot of people lost their houses, and even though I feel incredibly sorry for them, I hardly extend help since I am incapable of doing it.
One time, my mother told me a story about how hot chocolate becomes part of our family. She narrated that when she was a little girl, they lived in one of the remote areas in Leyte, where the means of transportation was only a bicycle, and to have a bike during those days was tough.
Only those who have money can buy one. If someone wants to go to the market, has to walk for a couple of hours before reaching it. What they did was to buy in bulk to save time and effort.
She mentioned that they always prioritize salt and sugar. The salt is for food seasoning, and the sugar is for the hot chocolate tablea. My great grandfather and great grandmother had various fruit trees planted near their house, and three of them were cacao trees. They used to climb up the cacao trees when they play.
Sometimes our great grandfather would scold her for climbing the cacao trees, but she never listened because she enjoyed it. Even her friends had fun climbing those cacao trees. The reason why my great grandfather did not allow them to play with those trees because he was afraid to lose the source of the hot chocolate. He loves drinking hot chocolate because it gives him energy.
The story of my mother made me reflect on how happy they were in the past. I could recall how quiet and relaxing her place was. I could still see the fruit trees, but the cacao tree was dying already because no one was there to take care of them.
Hot chocolate is often misunderstood by many. Mostly, think it increases their cholesterol level and will lead to heart problems, while others would say it lacks caffeine to keep them moving throughout the day. These misconceptions create confusion as to the health benefits of cacao beans. It is good that recent discoveries enlighten the present generation about this healthy bitter bean.
Today, research shows that it contains plenty of nutrients, one of which is magnesium, which reduces stress. Nutritionists even say the healthy fats of cacao beans help our body satiated and energized. That is why many individuals love to eat dark chocolate to feel relaxed.
New research from the American Academy of Neurology claims that consuming two cups of hot chocolate a day may help elderly adults who are experiencing impaired blood flow to have healthier brains and improve thinking skills.
Also, in May 2017, Frontiers in Nutrition analyzed that flavanols found in dark chocolate and cocoa may benefit brain function. Flavanols in hot chocolate contain flavonoids that have anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant effects.
Similarly, as published in the International Scientific Journal Nutricional Neuroscience indicates that cacao polyphenols help reduce the symptoms of depression. This study is a promising alternative for existing antidepressant agents.