Health Fitness Revolution has some good news- we approve of you eating some dark chocolate! Study after study proves that dark chocolate- rich, sweet, and delicious- is good for you! The healthy ingredient that dark chocolate is packed with is cocoa, known for being full of healthy natural chemicals like flavonoids and theobromine; this little bean offers a powerful disease-killing punch.
It’s important to note, however, that once sugar, milk, and butter are added, many of the health benefits of cacao can become diluted- which is why we recommend eating 70% or more cocoa dark chocolate.
- Good for your Heart: Here is scientific proof that dark chocolate is good for cardiovascular health- in a 9-year Swedish study of more than 31,000 women, those who ate one or two servings of dark chocolate each week cut their risk for heart failure by as much as 33%. Another long-term study in Germany found that one square of dark chocolate a day lowered blood pressure and reduced risk of heart attack and stroke by 39%.
- More filling than milk chocolate: For those that crave chocolate on a regular basis, switching to dark chocolate will leave you feeling more full and more likely to eat a smaller portion.
- Reduce stress: We all know what kind of havoc stress and cortisol can wreak on our bodies. But there’s some positive news, Swiss scientists found that when very anxious people ate an ounce and a half of dark chocolate every day for two weeks, their stress hormone levels were significantly reduced and the metabolic effects of stress were partially alleviated.
- Sun Protection: A British study showed that chocolate’s flavanols had sun protecting powers- after 3 months eating dark chocolate, their study subjects’ skin took twice as long to develop that reddening effect that indicates the beginning of a burn.
- Boost Alertness: Cocoa rich in flavanols boosts blood flow to key parts of the brain for 2 to 3 hours, improving short-term performance and alertness.