Top Ten Health Benefits Of Dark Chocolate For Your Health

Top Ten Health Benefits Of Dark Chocolate For Your Health

When many people here the word chocolate, they automatically think that it is the devil and should be avoided since it contains no health benefits whatsoever. While there is some truth to this, it’s not entirely true. If there’s chocolate in which none of this is true, it would definitely be dark chocolate. In fact, many researchers and experts recommend eating an ounce or two of dark chocolate each day for optimal health.

The more processed the chocolate, the fewer health benefits you’ll receive from it. This is the primary reason why raw cacao products have become so popular. If you’re going to eat chocolate, you better be going with raw cacao products or dark chocolate. Regular chocolate is often high in processed fat and loaded down with sugar, which is not good for your health.

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Here are 10 health benefits to eating dark chocolate on a regular basis.

1. High in Antioxidants

Cocoa is high in certain types of flavonoids, which are only found in cocoa in chocolate. Flavonoids are naturally occurring substances that can be found in plant foods and research shows that they act as antioxidants in the body, helping to counteract free radicals.

2. Blood Pressure Benefits

If you suffer from high blood pressure, consuming an ounce or two of dark chocolate each day might be beneficial to you. Several studies indicate that dark chocolate has a positive impact on blood pressure.

3. Lower LDL Cholesterol

Eating dark chocolate on a day-to-day basis has been shown to lower your LDL (bad) cholesterol by as much as 14%. This can reduce your risk of heart disease.

4. Natural Anti-Depressant

Chocolate is high in serotonin, a neurotransmitter in the brain that has been associated with happiness. Chocolate also increases your production of endorphins, which have been associated with feelings of pleasure and happiness as well. One study done on this matter suggested that melting chocolate in your mouth produced more pleasure than passionate kissing. This is probably why people reach for chocolate whenever they’re feeling depressed.

5. Cancer Fighter

Research has shown that dark chocolate can be used as a fantastic tool to fight cancer, along with green tea, blueberries and red wine. Dark chocolate is thought to work as a cancer fighter by inhibiting cell division and reducing cellular inflammation, although the research on this one is still out and further studies are needed to confirm this.

6. Prevents Tooth Decay

Several studies have shown that the theobromine found in dark chocolate can prevent tooth decay and kill the bacteria known as streptococcus mutans, which is a bacteria found in the mouth that contributes to increased cavities and rampant tooth decay.

7. Longer Life and Less Disease

A lengthy study done by the Dutch followed 200 men for nearly 20 years and divided them up into two groups – those who would eat dark chocolate every day and those who wouldn’t. They found that the men who ate dark chocolate on a regular basis had less of a chance of developing a disease and were likely to live longer as well.

Another study done on the Kuna tribe of Panama concluded similar results. The Kuna that consumed a high amount of cacao each day had a lower chance of developing a disease and were much more likely to live longer than the Kuna who ate no cacao or not as much.

To further strengthen these findings, the world’s longest-living person, Jeanne Louise Calment, lived until she was 122 and many of her friends and family members credited her longevity to her consumption of 2.5 pounds of dark chocolate each week.

8. High in Magnesium

Cacao is much higher in magnesium than any other plant. Magnesium is incredibly important for the maintenance and proper functioning of the digestive, cardiovascular and neurological systems. Many people are magnesium deficient and don’t even realize it, so including dark chocolate in your diet each day can help with this.

9. Artery Cleanup

Many studies have shown that the cacao fat in dark chocolate can act as a “broom” in your arteries, cleaning them up and preventing dangerous and deadly plaques from forming on the arterial wall.

10. Brain Health

Countless studies have shown that consuming dark chocolate on a regular basis can have a positive impact on your brain health. Researchers at John Hopkins University found that it can protect your brain from developing a deadly stroke and if you’ve already had one, it can shield the nerve cells of the brain and protect them from any further damage that may ensue. Researchers at California’s Salk Institute also found that dark chocolate can improve your memory. In a study they did, the researchers found that a chemical in chocolate known as epicatechin improved the memory of mice.

So instead of snacking on a Hershey’s Milk Chocolate bar or candy for that matter, why don’t you just grab yourself some raw cacao or a dark chocolate bar. If you want to get the most benefit out of your health, make sure you go with the extra dark varieties – 85% cacao or above. The extra dark varieties contain less sugar and more of the healthy compounds you need to experience all of the benefits above. So despite what you’ve heard about all chocolate being evil, disregard it because it is nothing more than a myth. One can go as far as to say that dark chocolate is a nutritious superfood.

10 Proven Health Benefits of Dark Chocolate | Why Is Dark Chocolate Healthy?

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