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Dec 23, 2020

4 Ways That Dark Chocolate Benefits Your Health

One of the most decadent and appreciated treats on the planet, chocolate is available in white, milk, and dark varieties. Although which chocolate you prefer indulging in when you eye the Chocolate Display Cases is a personal choice, dark chocolate is definitely the variety with the most health benefits. Next time you have the urge to eat a piece of chocolate, reach for the dark variety, and leave the guilt behind.

1. Promotes Heart Health

One of the most touted benefits of dark chocolate for your body is its ability to improve your cardiovascular health. Studies have shown that individuals who consume it on a regular basis have less of a risk of developing heart disease and stroke. Researchers attribute this finding to the flavonoids found in dark chocolate, which help the body produce nitric oxide. In turn, blood vessels relax and your blood pressure lowers.  

2. Beneficial for Your Brain

Studies have also shown that eating large amounts of dark chocolate is beneficial to your brain. This is due to the fact that chocolate stimulates pleasure and reward centers in the brain, which lessens stress and betters your mood. Brain health improvements were also found to be due to the presence of flavonoids found in it.

3. Reduces Risk of Diabetes

Although eating chocolate doesn’t sound like the best way to prevent diabetes, studies have shown that eating small amounts of dark chocolate each day has the ability to improve the way that glucose is metabolized by the body. In a 2017 study, the flavonoids in dark chocolate were shown to lower oxidative stress, which is believed to be the main cause of insulin resistance. When insulin sensitivity is improved, the risk of you getting diabetes is lessened.

4. Good for Your Skin

Dark chocolate is packed full of vitamins and minerals, such as copper, iron, and magnesium. It also contains manganese, which helps the body produce collagen, a protein that keeps your skin from aging prematurely. The calcium found in dark chocolate is important for healthy skin repair and renewal, and its high antioxidant content works to protect your skin against free radicals.

You may be wondering if all dark chocolate is created equal. If you are looking to reap its health benefits, the optimal cacao percentage you should look for on the label is 70% or higher. The higher the percentage of cacao, the more nutrients and antioxidants it contains.

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