The Health Benefits of Dark Chocolate
Dark chocolate is made from raw cacao beans, the natural seeds of the Theobroma Cacao tree. These beans are chock full of powerful nutrients that support healthy bodies in a variety of ways. Cacao beans contain important vitamins, minerals, essential fatty acids, fiber, amino acids, enzymes and many other phyto-nutrients. Most of all, cacao boasts an unprecedented spectrum of antioxidants with huge life-supporting advantages.
Unfortunately, most of the chocolate we come across is processed with sugar, milk and other unhealthy ingredients. But dark chocolate with 70% cacao (or cocoa) or greater is a superfood that is super good for you.
The health benefits of dark chocolate include…
Heart Health: The heart wants what the heart wants so give it some chocolate. Antioxidants and plant sterols found in dark chocolate help reduce bad cholesterol and lower blood pressure levels. That reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease and many life-threatening heart conditions.
Weight Loss: Chocolate for weight loss…who new? Studies indicate that indulging in a small amount of dark chocolate reduces cravings for high fat, sugary and salty foods. Eliminating these extra calories leads to weight loss. Pretty good trade off!
Disease Fighter: Antioxidants are the world’s leading nutrient for fighting a variety of diseases that stem from free radical oxidation and inflammation. Antioxidants protect and repair damage to cells that lead to cell-mutation diseases like cancer and other age-related degenerative diseases.
Mood Enhancement: When you bite into chocolate you may notice that you feel really good. Well, it’s not just because it tastes good. Cacao contains neurotransmitters including serotonin, dopamine and MAO inhibitors that can instantly elevate your mood. Fight your dark mood with a dose of dark chocolate.
Stress Relief: Next time you need a chill pill, grab a dark chocolate bar instead of a beer, cigarette or entire cheesecake. The nutritive properties in dark chocolate help reduce stress hormones that can wreak havoc on the body and mind. We don’t always have time for a relaxing day at the spa so make dark chocolate your quick fix for stress and anxiety.
Diabetes Management: Although traditional candy is not recommended for diabetics, the flavenoid antioxidants in dark chocolate stimulate production of nitric oxide that helps regulate insulin.
Cognitive Improvement: Dark chocolate improves blood flow and increases energy, two important aspects of brain function, memory, alertness and focus. Plus, cacao supports brain cells and reduces inflammation that can lead to brain deterioration.
It’s undeniable: the health benefits of dark chocolate are amazing! Make this delicious superfood part of your healthy lifestyle for your physical, mental and emotional well-being!