Both the Mayans and Aztecs believed the cacao beans had magical, or even divine, properties. It has become one of the most popular comfort food in the world. Yet, due to the over-consumption of this sweet delight, many health practitioners warn against it. They say that it is full of calories and does little in the way of ‘real’ nutrition. Beyond question, the high consumption of any food can have disturbing effects on our general health. Recent studies suggest that the consumption (in moderation of course) of dark chocolate has many health benefits.
Raw cacao is very good for our health. It is not sweet like the chocolate at the grocery store, which has been roasted and made more tempting with sugars and other additives. This means that you shouldn’t take the health benefits as a go-ahead to eat a bar of chocolate every day. Roasting chocolate at high temperatures removes a lot of the benefits.Instead so try to find some raw chocolate bars that don’t add lots of sugar.
Health Benefits Of Dark Chocolate
- Lowers cholesterol. In studies, dark chocolate has proven to lower LDL (bad cholesterol) and increase HDL (good cholesterol).
- It’s good for the heart. Dark chocolate is good for the heart. Dark chocolate contains nutrients that are known to help lower blood sugar and increase the blood flow. In addition, anything that lowers cholesterol is good for the heart. Some observational studies have shown that dark chocolate can prevent cardiovascular conditions.
- Improves the skin. Dark chocolate contains lots of flavanols, which protect the skin against sun damage. Of course, this doesn’t mean that you can go out without sun cream! However, it does mean that the flavanols will reduce the sun damage on the skin. Therefore, if you are planning a summer vacation, then you could start increasing your intake of dark chocolate a few weeks before your holiday. In general, dark chocolate has a positive effect on the skin.
Good source of antioxidants.
The cocoa tree is one of the best sources of antioxidants on the planet. This means that its fruits – the cocoa pods also have antioxidant properties. Dark chocolate and cocoa powder have a higher amount of antioxidants than blueberries or Acai berries.Our bodies are exposed to the free radicals all the time, not to mention that during the fat burning processes we produce free radicals.The antioxidants have a positive effect on human’s health and cell’s protection. The role antioxidants play in weight management is that they supply the body with nutrients and keep it strong during the fat burning processes.
Facts about dark chocolate
- Dark chocolate has 22% more iron, four times more fiber, and 242 grams more theobromine (the alkaloid which reduces blood pressure) per half bar than milk chocolate.
- Dark chocolate is a better choice for baking, as it’s not overly sweet.
- Chocolate produces serotonin. The serotonin releases lots of good feelings in the brain and allows you to de-stress naturally.
- Dark chocolate has more fiber and nutrients than the milk chocolate