The Blog

Posted by: Kathy Fitchett Date: March 5, 2013

The Health Benefits of Eating Dark Chocolate

If you’re going to eat chocolate, choose to eat the dark variety, as it contains less fat than milk chocolate and many additional health benefits.

 1) Dark Chocolate is Good for Your Heart. Studies show that eating a small amount of dark chocolate two or three times each week can help lower your blood pressure. Dark chocolate improves blood flow and may help prevent the formation of blood clots. Eating dark chocolate may also prevent hardening of the arteries.

2) Dark Chocolate is Good for Your Brain. It increases blood flow to the brain as well as to the heart, so it can help improve cognitive function. Dark chocolate also helps reduce your risk of stroke.

Dark chocolate also contains several chemical compounds that have a positive effect on your mood and cognitive health. Chocolate contains phenylethylamine (PEA) which encourages your brain to release endorphins, so eating dark chocolate will make you feel happier.

 Dark chocolate also contains caffeine, a mild stimulant. However, dark chocolate contains much less caffeine than coffee. A 1.5 ounce bar of dark chocolate contains 27 mg of caffeine, compared to the 200 mg found in an eight ounce cup of coffee.

 3) Dark Chocolate Helps Control Blood Sugar. 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.

 4) Dark Chocolate is Full of Antioxidants which help free your body of free radicals (which cause aging) so eating antioxidant rich foods like dark chocolate can protect you from many types of cancer and slow the signs of aging.

 5) Dark Chocolate Contains Theobromine, which has been shown to harden tooth enamel so unlike most other sweets, lowers your risk of getting cavities if you practice proper dental hygiene.

 Theobromine is also a mild stimulant, though not as strong as caffeine. It can, however, help to suppress coughs.

 6) Dark Chocolate is High in Vitamins and Minerals specifically:

•Potassium

 •Copper

 •Magnesium

 •Iron

 The copper and potassium in dark chocolate help prevent against stroke and cardiovascular ailments. The iron in chocolate protects against iron deficiency anemia, and the magnesium in chocolate helps prevent type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure and heart disease.