8 Healthy Benefits of Dark Chocolate
Chocolate has gotten a lot of media coverage in recent years because it’s believed that it may help protect your cardiovascular system. The reasoning being that the cocoa bean is rich in a class of plant nutrients called flavoring. Super foods don’t just come from your supermarket’s produce aisle. In fact those chocolate candy bars next to the gummy bears now qualify. Study after study proves that dark chocolate—sweet, rich, and delicious—is good for more than curing a broken heart. Dark chocolate has a long history being used as a healing plant, a mood enhancer, and even an aphrodisiac. So you’re in luck: you can indeed use high quality chocolate to take control of your performance.
But experienced chocolate hackers also know chocolate to be a useful tool for improving performance in lesser-known ways. In fact, cacao exerts a systemic effect on the body, with benefits ranging from improved healthy blood flow and cognition to beneficial alterations in gut bacteria Dark chocolate is loaded with nutrients that can positively affect your health. Studies show that dark chocolate (not the sugary crap) can improve health and lower the risk of heart disease.
A 100 gram bar of dark chocolate with 70-85% cocoa contains :
- 11 grams of fiber.
- 67% of the RDA for Iron.
- 58% of the RDA for Magnesium.
- 89% of the RDA for Copper.
- 98% of the RDA for Manganese.
- It also has plenty of potassium, phosphorus, zinc and selenium.
Maintenance of a Healthy Cardiovascular System:
Regular chocolate consumption is also associated with improved markers for cardiovascular health. Notably, the polyphenols in cacao increase HDL cholesterol (the good kind), which in turns leads to decreased oxidized LDL cholesterol (the bad kind) Other effects include higher levels of circulating nitric oxide and reduced platelet adhesion resulting in improved endothelial function.
Aids Weight Loss:
One ounce of dark chocolate with between 70 and 85 percent cocoa three times a week can help you lose extra body weight. It is rich in fiber, which helps keep you feeling full for a longer time period. Eating dark chocolate in moderation gives you a more filling effect and lessens your cravings for fatty, sweet and salty foods. Also, being rich in antioxidants, dark chocolate can slow down digestion so you feel full longer and eat less at your next meal. It can even revive your metabolism to burn more fat and calories.
Dark Chocolate Helps Control Blood Sugar:
Dark chocolate helps keep your blood vessels healthy and your circulation unimpaired to protect against type 2 diabetes. The flavonoids in dark chocolate also help reduce insulin resistance by helping your cells to function normally and regain the ability to use your body’s insulin efficiently. Dark chocolate also has a low glycemic index, meaning it won’t cause huge spikes in blood sugar levels.