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A History of Chocolate

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In this month’s box, we’re featuring Ghirardelli’s gooey milk chocolate and caramel squares. And let us just say: It involved a lot of hard work by the entire Birchbox team. In addition to rigorous taste testing, we did a little digging into the history of this sweet treat—and ever since we learned that it’s technically a superfood, we’re indulging guilt-free. Here, a look back at chocolate through the ages.

600 B.C.E. The Olmecs, an ancient tribe from the tropical lowlands of South Central Mexico, are the first to domesticate the plant—and to give it a name: kakawa.

300-900 C.E. The ancient Mayans elevate cacao to cult status. The cacao tree plays a significant role in their creation story and the beans, ground into a paste and mixed with chilies, spices, and water, are thought to have restorative, mood-boosting properties.

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Pomega5 Diet: Day 1

Since food and beauty are two of my favorite things, I’m psyched that we recently added Pomega5 as a partner. The brand creates all its products using nutritious, plant-based ingredients like pomegranates, oranges, and green tea — the same healthy foods you should be putting on your plate. Which leads me to this week’s challenge: I’m putting myself (and my skin) on the Pomega5 diet. In addition to using their products (which I already love), I’m going to make a point of adding one of their super ingredients to my diet every day. First up: Pomegranates.

Ingredient: Pomegranate

Basics: A few years ago, pomegranates were the hottest thing in the produce aisle. Since then they’ve been nudged aside by acai, chia seeds, and other superfoods, but they’re still one of the healthiest thing you can put in your body. And on your body for that matter — Pomegranate Seed Oil is the foundation of most of Pomega5 products because of its high levels of Omega 5 essential fatty acids, which helps your cells regenerate, protects against free radicals, and calms inflammation.

Skin diet: As a face oil convert, I had no problem incorporating the Daily Revitalizing Concentrate into my routine. Each little ampoule has more than enough oil for my face and neck (I usually don’t even use the whole thing) and though it feels slick at first, it dries matte. Each ‘serving’ has 60 percent pomegranate seed oil, which is huge. 

On the menu: I cheated and made a simple salad of arugula, pomegranate seeds, shaved broccoli, and carrots for dinner last night (but I brought leftovers for lunch!). I also cheated and bought pomegranate seeds instead of de-seeding the fruit myself, which would have meant staining my kitchen walls crimson. It was a perfect light supper, which meant I felt perfectly entitled to a big scoop of ice cream for dessert.

—Mollie

Eat for better skin? Yes, please. Follow Dr. Oz Garcia’s beauty diet for healthier skin, nails, and hair.

Check out some of our favorite skincare, including Pomega5 in our Shop.