Studies have shown that dark chocolate contains phytonutrients called flavonoids, which are plant chemicals that act as antioxidants.
It contains 50-90% cocoa solids, cocoa butter, and sugar. It may contain traces of butter in some cases. Dark chocolate may also have benefits for the skin and heart, among others. In case you’re skeptical about taking dark chocolate, this article will change your mind.
The most important part is that you be careful with the quantity you take in. Here are the health benefits of eating dark chocolate.
1. Boost heart health
Studies have suggested that dark chocolate may have more benefits than milk chocolate due to the presence of flavonoids in dark chocolate. Dark chocolate antioxidants may cut heart disease risk by preventing oxidation, lowering bad cholesterol levels, and elevating good cholesterol levels.
2. Promotes brain function
High intake of high-quality chocolate enabled improvements in cognitive processing, visual-spatial awareness, abstract reasoning, scanning, and working memory. The flavonols in dark chocolate may elevate mood and improve cognitive health in the elderly.
3. Protects your skin
The flavanols in dark chocolate can protect the skin against sun damage. Studies show that dietary flavanols from cocoa offer photoprotection and improve dermal blood circulation. This effect can be attributed to the antioxidants (especially flavanols) in dark chocolate.
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4. Aids weight loss
Research suggests that dark chocolate aids weight loss. It may decrease the expression of genes involved in fatty acid synthesis. This reduces the digestion and absorption of fats and carbs, thereby increasing satiety. Moderate intake of dark chocolate increases satiety and leads to weight loss.
5. Lowers blood pressure
The flavanols in dark chocolate can stimulate the endothelium, the lining of arteries, to produce nitric oxide. One of the functions of NO is to send signals to the arteries to relax, which lowers the resistance to blood flow and therefore reduces blood pressure.