We aren’t doctors at Chocomize, but we know there are benefits to chocolate other than just tasting amazing. We did a little research and found
seven health facts that we think you should know about chocolate. If you are a health conscious individual, read about some of the health benefits chocolate might have. Here you go, seven health benefits of chocolate:
1. Chocolate can reduce the risk of a heart attack. A study at John’s Hopkins School of Medicine determined that blood platelets tended to clot less in those who ate chocolate regularly than those who didn’t. This is important because when platelets clot, the can block arteries and lead to heart attacks. Another short-term study done by Harvard University School of Public Health also showed that chocolate can reduce the risk of heart disease.
2. Chocolate can reduce blood pressure. Numerous studies, including the above mentioned one done at Harvard University School of Public Health, have shown that eating chocolate regularly can reduce blood pressure.
3. Chocolate contains antioxidants. Not all chocolates are created equal. Antioxidant flavonoids are found in dark chocolate and are at the root of most of chocolate’s health benefits. Antioxidants are important because they help the body’s cells fight formation of plaque on the walls of arteries which can lead to heart disease. If you are trying to go healthy, it’s definitely better to stick with a dark chocolate bar.
4. The fat in chocolate is made up of three types of fat, two of which are actually good for you. Cocoa butter is made up of equal parts oleic, stearic, and palmitic acid. Oleic acid has been shown to be a ‘heart healthy’ fat, the kind that is found in olive oil. Studies have shown that stearic acid has a neutral effect on cholesterol and neither raises or lowers it. And although palmitic acid is a type of fat that has been shown to raise cholesterol levels, it is only one part of the fat in chocolate.
5. Dark chocolate has a low glycemic index. Certain kinds of dark chocolate have a low glycemic index which means that eating a dark chocolate custom chocolate bar won’t send your blood sugar through the roof. A recent study showed that when flavanol rich chocolate (most commonly dark chocolate) was given to participants over a 15 day period, their blood sugar levels were lower than previously recorded.
6. Chocolate contains numerous chemical compounds that have been shown to be ‘mood-elevating’. Why does chocolate make you feel so great? It contains theobromine, caffeine, and phenylethylamine. All of these compounds are forms of stimulants and can release endorphins into your brain. Endorphins are what give you that great feeling you get after taking a big bite of a great tasting chocolate bar. Be careful though, theobromine is highly toxic to animals, especially dogs.
7. Chocolate can reduce the risk of a stroke. One study in which almost 45,000 people participated in showed that those who regularly ate chocolate were 22% less likely to suffer a stroke than those who abstained from chocolate.