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Dr. Joseph Feuerstein. “Eat chocolate and avoid a heart attack.”

I’m normally disciplined about my food intake and gravitate toward healthy choices. When dining out, I am self-trained to navigate to the salads or vegetarian dishes on the menu, averting my eyes from burgers and fries. OK, sometimes I peek at desserts, though usually resist ordering them. But today was different.

For some reason, I was very anxious today. Not to be misleading, anxiety is not exactly a state of mind foreign to me on most days. But today should have held promise. I survived the Thanksgiving frenzy of shopping, cleaning, cooking, dishes and more cleaning, and tearfully saying goodbye to my son returning to college. I caught up on my work, both my day job and freelance writing. The house is in order – did I mention I cleaned?

Maybe it’s the presentation I have to do next week, the mention of a nor’easter next week (the day of my presentation, of course), my fear of getting on the scale after the Thanksgiving feast followed by a gluttonous leftover extravaganza, or all of the above. Whatever the reason, I committed the ultimate sin of any health-minded individual. I baked a chocolate cake.

This rash behavior may have been prompted by a well-meaning friend who sent me a video about the benefits of chocolate. Never mind that the video referred to dark chocolate and my cake was not. I did use organic cocoa powder, whole wheat flour and walnuts. Doesn’t that count? I thought so, until I saw the amount of oil and sugar in the recipe. Never mind that.

The fact that the cake recipe was from The Pink Ribbon Diet and included healthy ingredients, including zucchini believe it or not, was just what I needed to convince myself this gluttony was a good choice. By the way, as a side note to my fellow chocolate addicts, zucchini adds moisture to chocolate cake and you don’t even taste it. But I digress.

chocolate cake

Whatever it was that led me to bake today was powerful. If only I had the capability to harness that power and channel it in other directions, I could rule the world. But I have to say, the chocolate cake worked like a street drug. I feel so much better, though I will undoubtedly regret it in the morning.

I didn’t just have one piece. I licked the spatula, ate the pieces that crumbled off and consumed two pieces after dinner like a wolverine. Yes, I will definitely regret this tomorrow, which is why I am writing about how fantastic I feel tonight; energetic, cheerful and creative. When I wake up tomorrow riddled with remorse, I plan to read this post to remind myself that…sometimes you just need chocolate cake.