20 Dec 2020
The potential health benefits of eating dark chocolate
Most of the time, people see dark chocolate as comfort food. But did you know that the consumption of this tasty delight might prove to be healthy for your body?
Filled with nutrients that help in multiple bodily functions, dark chocolate - when consumed moderately because of its high-calorie count - may provide a number of potential health benefits.
Here are some of them.
It can help control your blood pressure levels
Some studies have found that the intake of dark chocolate may cause a drop in your blood pressure because of its high magnesium content.
Additionally, researchers have observed that this chocolate may raise the level of nitric oxide in your body. This is important because nitric oxide acts on small receptors in our blood vessels and dilates them to lower blood pressure levels.
Its high antioxidant content may prevent free radicals
Antioxidants are important for your body because they protect you from disease-causing free radicals.
Dark chocolate contains a lot of antioxidants, including polyphenols, flavanols, and catechins.
In fact, one study showed that dark chocolate had more antioxidant activity, polyphenols, and flavanols than any other fruits tested, which includes the highly recommended blueberries and acai berries.
It may reduce the risk of heart diseases
The capability of lowering blood pressure already makes dark chocolate a heart-friendly food item.
But other than that, the cocoa flavonoids present in dark chocolate may boost your overall heart health by reducing the risk of heart diseases.
This happens because dark chocolate has shown the ability to lower the arteries-blocking bad cholesterol and helps in maintaining the levels of good cholesterol.
It may improve your brain's overall functions
Some studies have observed that eating dark chocolate may improve overall brain function and prevent harmful conditions.
For example, a 2018 study suggests that the flavanols in dark chocolate may enhance neuroplasticity, your brain's ability to reorganize itself in case of injury and disease.
There might be a potential connection between chocolate consumption and cognitive performance, but more research is needed in this area.
It contains vitamins and minerals that are essential for skin
Dark chocolate is packed with vitamins and minerals, which are necessary for good skin health.
For example, it contains manganese that enables the production of collagen, a protein that keeps your skin young and healthy.
Additionally, the high levels of antioxidants in dark chocolate, as we just discussed, may protect your skin from the harmful UV rays when you are out in the sun.