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Chocolate is the ultimate comfort food, a sure-fire stand-by in times of stress, a reliable source of consolation when life has let us down, and a mood-enhancer and romance-inducer in more positive circumstances. But is it at all healthy?
If you scoff lots of it, obviously not. But there are a host of medically proven ways in which chocolate — good chocolate, which is to say dark chocolate, with a cocoa percentage of around seventy per cent or more — really is good for us.
Research is continuing all the time, and experts have already found that chocolate is good for the heart, circulation and brain, and it has been suggested that it may be beneficial in such major health challenges as autism, obesity and diabetes.
Chocolate benefits to health
- Dark chocolate is a skin-friendly ingredient that helps to keep your skin healthy, glowing and just flawless. Check out few outstanding benefits of dark chocolate for skin here:
- As mentioned above, dark chocolate hosts a range of potent antioxidants. These antioxidants protect your skin from free radical damage; keeping it soft, supple and juvenile for long.
- With great sun protection properties, it shields your skin against detrimental UV rays and thus helps in preventing conditions like sunburns and skin cancer.
- Regular consumption of dark chocolate helps you achieve a smooth, problem-free complexion. It also keeps your skin moist and well nourished.
- Dark chocolate makes an excellent skin-detoxifier in combination with caffeine. It sloughs off the dead skin cells and allows the newly exposed, fresh skin to breathe freely.
- Stress is a huge beauty bummer. If not checked, it can ruin your entire personality. Dark chocolate boasts wonderful stress-relieving qualities and work wonders in getting you a glowing skin by reducing elevated stress hormones.
- It helps in promoting blood circulation in the scalp which leads to increased growth of healthy, lustrous locks. Thanks to being a circulation-booster, it is also found to be very effective in reducing hair loss.
- Infused with the goodness of several hair-benefiting ingredients, dark chocolate improves the overall health of your tresses, making them super-glossy and voluminous.
- With incredible anti-inflammatory properties, it also helps minimize the odds of getting scalp infections.
10. Heart Diseases
Dark chocolate contains antioxidants such as flavonoids. Antioxidants are the best elements that a body can receive or produce as they have the capacity to prevent aging by free radicals that can also cause heart diseases.
- Blood Sugar Levels
It is hard to believe that a sugar-enriched substance can balance the blood sugar levels, but it is true! The amount of sugar in dark chocolate does not affect your body much as its glycemic index is low. And the flavonoids that it is enriched with aids the influence that insulin offers on the sugar levels.
It is no myth that cholesterol clogs the veins and arteries and doesn’t let them function normally. But dark chocolate serves to reduce LDL (bad cholesterol) levels in the arteries and heart.
- Mood Improver
Stress is a bad factor, and one should steer clear of it as much as possible! The contents of dark chocolate help in the production of endorphins which are produced by the brain cells and are known to alleviate the mood. It stimulates the brain cells and is known to relax a person.
- Skin Protection
The content of flavonoids in the dark chocolate has been found to have positive effects on the body. One such effect is providing protection against the harmful UV rays of the Sun.
- Stroke Prevention
The increased levels of flavonoids like epicatechin are known to protect the brain against strokes. This is found in dark chocolate in a good quantity. The nerve cells of people consuming dark chocolate are less prone to a stroke as compared to people who do not consume dark chocolate.
- Anemia Cure
The flavonoids in dark chocolate also help in curing anemia and providing a treatment to those with a poor diet.
- Eyesight Improvement
Studies have also shown that the flavanoids in dark chocolate help to improve blood flow to the brain. This further helps improve eyesight also on account of better blood flow.
- Cognitive Function
The cognitive function in the human body is enhanced with the consumption of dark chocolate as it improves the blood flow to the brain.
- Blood Pressure
Dark chocolate is rich in minerals such as copper and magnesium which are responsible for keeping the blood pressure normal especially in case of people with excessive fluctuation in their BP.
- Full Of Protein
Drinking chocolate milk after exercising is great for our health because it is full of protein. If you are having one cup of milk, you will be consuming 8 to11 grams of protein. So, if you would like to consume around 17 to 25 grams of protein, you will have to drink around 500 to 700 and 50 ml of chocolate milk. This will act fast on your body, repair all those tissues and help you gain muscle mass. The content of protein in your drink will actually give you lean and fit muscles.
- Content Of Carbohydrates
Chocolate milk also contains carbohydrates, which is great for your health, especially if you have been lifting a whole lot of weights. The count of carbohydrates also depends on the product you use. Different products have different content and levels of carbohydrates. Hershey’s Chocolate Milk seems to have the highest carb count whereas Hoods Calorie Countdown has the lowest. The sugar in this will boost your energy and restore it. You will be able to work out harder and better next time you hit the gym. In fact, this will help you enjoy the workout better. If your muscle tissues tear up, this will stop them from getting sore. In fact, they will get repaired on their own.
- Increases Your Endurance
So, if you have been working out for a couple of weeks or are preparing yourself for a marathon soon, you would probably need something that will increase your endurance and help you workout or practice for a longer period. In that case, what could be better than chocolate milk? This will take good care of your body, boost strength and energy and help you give a hundred percent!
- Makes You Stronger
Chocolate milk is also something that will make you stronger and healthier in the long run. If you take it at least three times a week after your workout, you will see changes in your body. You will also become stronger. Weights that couldn’t be lifted earlier will now become a little easier than last time. If you gave up too quick while running or swimming, this drink will keep you going.