Happy Valentines Day!

Valentines Day - a day where approximately one billion cards are exchanged! (85% purchased by women.) Where did this holiday and these traditions come from? That was a lingering question I had.

It seems Valentines Day, as relating to romance, dates back to the Middle Ages. In France & England, it was believed that February 14th was the beginning of the birds mating system, which added to the idea of a day of romance.

Written valentines didn't appear until about 1400 and by the middle of the 1800s it became common to exchange tokens of love and handwritten notes.  But how did we go from tokens of affection and handwritten notes to $100 flowers and chocolate??  A question for another day.I love the thought of small gifts and hand written notes.  Not so big on $100 flowers or tons of sugary candy that shoot your blood sugar through the roof! (And especially not for our children.)

If your sweetheart LOVES chocolate (as most of us do), why not opt for a healthier version this year?  Dark Chocolate! (Dark Chocolate has a higher cocoa content, preferably 65% or more.) If you need a few health reasons to give this a try, below are just a few of the potential health benefits:

1. Dark Chocolate is very nutritious!  (It has fiber and is loaded with minerals.)

2. It is an excellent source of antioxidants.

3. It may lower blood pressure.

4. Dark chocolate may lower your risk of cardiovascular disease.

5. And last but not least, it may improve your brain function.

Although dark chocolate was something I had to learn to love, I personally have some (a square or two) regularly.  Give it a try for the one you love this year!  And Happy Valentines Week everyone!

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