Got a thing for chocolate? You’d probably love to know that it’s now classified as a superfood. In fact, a lot of studies have proved that chocolate benefits don’t stop at simply satisfying your craving for sweets. Chocolate’s power is derived from cacao, a tropical evergreen tree with beanlike seeds that gives chocolate a distinct taste. Enriched with healthy compounds such as theobromine and flavonoids, the little seeds possess disease-busting properties.
All chocolates with 70% cacao content can help the body in more ways than one. Here are 5 sweet chocolate benefits:
1. It’s good for the heart.
Give your heart some love by munching on your favorite chocolate bars. A recently published journal states that habitual consumption of chocolate can lower the risk of stroke and cardiovascular diseases. Thanks to polyphenol, a compound found in cacao that protects the heart against common diseases and improves blood vessel health.
2. It helps you lose weight.
Finally, you can add dark chocolate to your weight loss diet! Apparently, cacao is rich in epicatechin, catechin, and procyanidin, antioxidants that prevent obesity. When processed and fermented, cacao permits formation of these antioxidants. These suppress hyperglycemia (excessive glucose in the bloodstream) and fat accumulation. It also increases protein activity to promote lean mass development.
If you are a fan of powdered chocolate, there is a good chance for you to reduce the risk of obesity-related inflammation, insulin resistance, and fatty liver disease.
3. It prevents diabetes.
Diabetic patients don’t need to avoid chocolate any longer. A recent study in Luxembourg concludes that eating dark chocolate drops insulin resistance and improves liver enzymes. Flavonoids in chocolates stimulate the production of nitric oxide, which regulates control insulin sensitivity.
Cocoa is also packed with epicatechin monomers, compounds that enhance the secretion of insulin and help the body cope with high blood glucose.
4. It reduces stress.
Turns out, stress eating isn’t that bad after all. Human tests show that chocolate benefits the brain by reducing stress levels and inflammation and improving immunity, mood, and memory. The same research suggests that the higher the cacao content, the more beneficial chocolate is for memory, mood, cognition, and immunity.
Flavonoids in cacao are highly potent antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds that are beneficial for brain health.
5. It improves mental performance and alertness.
Now, you don’t have to feel guilty about snacking on a chocolate bar when you’re under pressure at work. Aside from alleviating stress, chocolate has been found to improve brain function, giving you extra brain power, alertness, and smarts when you need it most.
Cacao contains flavonols, the antioxidants that improve memory, cognitive function, and cognitive decline. It also sustains the brain’s performance during mentally demanding conditions such as sleep loss and fatigue.
Clearly, consuming your favorite comfort food has more advantages than you can imagine. There could be more chocolate benefits, given it is consumed in acceptable amounts. Some chocolates are rather high in sugar and fat content and it’s recommended to follow a 7-ounce or around 4-chocolate bar limit per week.
Make sure to check out our amazing collection of chocolate bars which beholds these benefits.