Chocolates are a treat for many. They are sweet, creamy, and divine in taste. This treat is enjoyed by all, from children to senior citizens. Chocolate seems too good to be true because not only do they taste like food from heaven but they are also very beneficial. They are packed with antioxidants that boost immunity.
Given below are some advantages that will make you feel guilt-free while you binge on your third bar of chocolate.
Here are 15 Surprising Health Benefits of Chocolates
1. Chocolates are very nutritious.
Chocolate contains tiny amounts of zinc, iron, copper, and protein, these metal ions boosts the cell’s immunity and also provide glowing skin. Chocolate also contains fat, namely cocoa butter. Cocoa butter when consumed provides anti-inflammatory properties, thereby preventing bloating. Research shows that it has a positive effect on skin by providing elasticity and hydrating the skin. Cocoa butter contains 2/3 saturated fat and 1/3 monounsaturated fat.
Chocolate has traces of caffeine, It might not be a substitute to a cup of energy-boosting coffee, but it can produce tiny energy boosts with each bite. 28 grams of milk chocolate has 5 mg of caffeine, 28 grams of semisweet chocolate has 5-10 mg of caffeine, and 170 grams of cocoa has 10 milligrams of caffeine. So next time you feel sluggish make yourself a healthy cocoa drink.
Dark chocolates have a large number of flavonoids called catechins, Catechins are natural antioxidants that help avoid cell damage. These substances can reduce the formation of free radicals in the body, thereby protecting cells and molecules from damage.100 grams of dark chocolate contains 11grams of fiber, 67% of iron, 58% of magnesium, 89% of copper, 98% of manganese.
2. Chocolates are a powerful source of antioxidants.
You might have heard the term “antioxidants” being thrown around by nutritionists and health specialists, but what exactly are antioxidants? Before we understand antioxidants we must know the role free radicals play in our body, these molecular species are responsible for heart disease, cancer, and other deadly diseases. Antioxidants are the superheroes responsible to slow down the work of free radicals and eliminate them altogether. It is vital to eat antioxidant-rich food, and one of the best sources of antioxidants are Chocolates. Research shows that raw unprocessed cocoa bean is one of the highest antioxidant-rich foods, It has more antioxidants than blueberries and acai berries.
3. Chocolate improves blood flow
Dark chocolate contains flavonols that can stimulate the lining of the arteries (Endothelium), by doing so nitric oxide is produced. Nitric oxide is responsible for sending signals to the arteries to relax and this removes any restriction to blood flow thereby increasing the flow of blood.
4. Protects your skin from harmful sun rays.
Dark chocolate has many benefits for the skin. We now know that the bioactive compound in dark chocolate (flavonol) is the star of the show when it comes to health benefits. This compound is also a blessing to your skin, research shows that flavonols can protect your skin against sun damage and improve the blood flow to your skin keeping it moist and supple. This compound also increases skin density and improves its hydration. Studies show that it prevents redness when skin is exposed to constant sun damage. If your planning to step out on a sunny day grab your sunscreen and a handful of chocolate.
5. Chocolate can improve brain function.
Studies have shown that chocolate can improve brain function. Eating high flavanol cocoa has proven to show an increase in blood flow to the brain. Cocoa is beneficial for elderly people as it helps with improving cognitive functions, mental impairment and verbal fluency. A substance called lavado which is present in cocoa is known to reduce or prevent the onset of Alzheimer’s disease. Cocoa also contains stimulant substances like caffeine and theobromine, which gives a boost to your brain. So if you have a deadline or need a power-up its good to keep a few chocolate bars by your side.
6. Chocolate helps curb Cholesterol.
Before we tell you how chocolate impacts cholesterol we must know that there are two types of cholesterol: bad cholesterol namely LDL (Low-density lipoprotein), Good cholesterol namely HDL (high-density lipoprotein). LDL is bad because it is this cholesterol that will build upon the walls of your blood vessels and form a clot, this prevents the passage of blood and causes a heart attack. HDL is good cholesterol since it picks up the excess cholesterol and takes it to the liver to break it down and remove it from your system. Chocolate is proven to increase the production of HDL and reduce LDL.
7. Chocolate reduces heart disease.
Dark chocolate plays a vital role in heart health. Research shows that consuming chocolate reduces the risk of heart disease by one-third, research shows that the more you consume chocolate the risk of heart disease decreases. Compounds in dark chocolate are known to be highly protective of the production of bad cholesterol. It is proved that eating chocolate two or more times per week lowered the risk of having calcified plaque in the artery walls. Doctors advise having one piece of chocolate a day.
8. Chocolate improves fetal growth and development.
It is proven that eating 30 grams of chocolate during pregnancy will help the growth of the fetus and its overall development. So for all the mom-to-be, next time give in to the pregnancy cravings and have dark chocolate daily. Chocolate is also proven to be healthy for toddlers as well as kids. You can trust us for Baby Shower & Baby Birth announcement chocolate gift boxes.
9. Chocolate improves athletic performance.
Dark chocolate has many health benefits. The journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition proved that dark chocolate boosts oxygen availability. When a study was done on a group of cyclists, the cyclists who ate dark chocolate had used less oxygen and ran longer the distance than compared to the cyclist who did not consume chocolate. Scientists believe that the success of dark chocolate is due to the flavonol present, known as epicatechins. This flavonol increases the release of nitric oxide in the body, causing the inner muscles of the blood vessels to relax.
10. Improve memory power.
Research shows that the memory power of elderly people increases when they consume more chocolate. This is because of the flavonol called “Catechin” .
11. Chocolate improves your mathematical skills.
I should have eaten more chocolate when I scored less in math because research has shown that when students were given hot cocoa they benefitted because of the blood flow to the brain causing them to score more in math. It is said to improve analytical skills. Next time you are stuck on a math problem struggling to solve it, why don’t you take a break and indulge in some sweet chocolate.
12. Chocolate elevates your mood.
When you are feeling grumpy, sad, and demotivated, It would be wise to invest in some good chocolate because studies have shown that the polyphenols in chocolate improves your mood and makes you calmer and happier.
13. Chocolate helps produce more endorphins.
Studies have shown that chocolate releases dopamine, this is the same chemical that is released when you are happy, excited, or in love. The great advantage of chocolate is the beneficial compound called flavonols, this compound will help with endorphin production, leaving you feeling high and energetic. Endorphins play a vital role in preventing depression and mental disorders. So its best to snack on chocolates when you are feeling down.
14. Reduces complications in pregnancy.
Pregnancy complications like preeclampsia, which is a condition that shoots up blood pressure can be avoided by eating chocolates. Research shows that the chemical in dark chocolate, namely theobromine can stimulate the heart and dilate the arteries. Women who ate more chocolate had a 40 percent less chance of developing preeclampsia. Pregnancy is the best time to eat dark chocolate so grab that bar without any guilt.
15. Chocolate helps with diabetes.
Diabetic people often tend to avoid chocolate as they feel that it is too sweet, but a study has found that moderate consumption of chocolate can help the body’s metabolism and enhance insulin functions. This occurs because of the flavonols present in chocolate.
The next time you feel guilty for eating too much chocolate, just remember these handy benefits while you munch on another bar. Chocolate is considered a superfood so make sure you include it in your diet. Having dark chocolate daily does wonders for your body.
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