Valentine’s Day: Calculated Plot to Destroy Romance?

Think about it: There’s nothing more romantic than a spontaneous outpouring of love. But that’s one thing you can’t have on V-day, when we’re all supposed to move in lockstep formation down to the jewelry/flower/stationery store. How about cozying up over an intimate dinner for two? Every restaurant in town is packed to the gills and about as romantic as the mosh pit at a Green Day concert. And what about being fit, healthy, and ready for loving’? Good-bye, sexy body: There’s nothing like an enormous cardboard heart filled with carbohydrates to ruin the way your belly looks, and feels.

When it comes to chocolate disaster, temptation is everywhere. From the coworker who sets out a community bowl, to the aisles lined with sweets at your local grocery store, there’s no love for your waistline.

But I have good news: If you know what to look for and can exercise a little self-discipline, indulging your sweet tooth isn’t nearly as sinful as you might think. That’s why I’ve dedicated this post to arming you with the knowledge you need to enjoy a romantic evening, compliments of the new Eat This, Not That! And Cook This, Not That!. Here’s how to embrace the sweet (and still guilt-free) side of life:

Ghirardelli Milk & Caramel Squares Not That!

Ghirardelli Milk & Caramel Chocolate Squares (1 square)

73 calories

4 g fat (2 g saturated, < 1 g trans)

8 g sugar

These chocolates are troubling for two reasons: Aside from the fact that a single square has 73 calories, Ghirardelli uses enough partially hydrogenated oil to make eating three pieces—the recommended serving size—result in the consumption of 0.5 grams of trans fat, or a quarter of your day’s daily allowance. Candy heart: Okay. Candy heart disease: Not so good.

Eat This Instead!

Ghirardelli Intense Dark Twilight Delight Squares, 72% Cacao (1 square)

55 calories

5 g fat (3 g saturated)

3 g sugars

FOOD SECRET: White chocolate isn’t technically chocolate, since it contains no cocoa solids; it’s mostly just fat and sugar.