Studies show that people who eat 1 to 2 servings of dark chocolate had reduced risk of heart failure. It can also help lower the blood pressure and reduce the risk of stroke. The nerve cells of people consuming dark chocolate are less prone to a stroke as compared to people who do not consume dark chocolate. 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. It also promotes blood circulation because it thins the blood and has anti-clotting properties. Cholesterol clogs the veins and arteries and doesn’t let them function normally. But dark chocolate reduces LDL which the bad cholesterol levels in the arteries and heart.
Dark chocolate is excellent for diabetic patients as it reduces insulin resistance and helps your body to use insulin efficiently. A certain ingredient in dark chocolate increases nitric oxide production and that helps control insulin sensitivity.
Dark chocolate can help people lose weight. It gives it a more filling effect and lessens your cravings for fatty, sweet and salty foods. If you incorporate a little portion of dark chocolate into your diet, you can get optimum health benefits without the weight gain.
A study showed that babies born to mothers, who consumed dark chocolates during their pregnancies, were happier and they smiled a lot more. So it is better to use dark chocolate during pregnancy rather than giving pacifiers to your crying babies after birth. It also relieves stress in mothers-to-be.
Stress is a bad factor and one should steer clear of it as much as possible. Phenylethalmine is an important chemical found in dark chocolates and it is this same chemical found in the brain that creates the experience and feeling of love. This same chemical also encourages the release of endorphins by your brain, a chemical essential for putting you in a good mood. Dark chocolates can also relieve stress by reducing the level of stress hormones. It contains serotonin which acts as a natural anti-depressant.
Dark chocolates prevent sun burns. It contains high levels of flavanols. A research study proved that flavanols found in chocolates can provide protection against harmful effects of the sun. Dark chocolate helps keep your skin healthy, glowing and flawless. Regular consumption of dark chocolate helps you achieve a smooth, problem free complexion and keeps your skin moist and well nourished. It helps in promoting blood circulation in the scalp which leads to increased growth of healthy hair. As dark chocolate is a circulation-booster, it is also found to be very effective in reducing hair loss
Chocolates boost brain power. Research showed that participants who consume chocolates high in flavanol contents scored high in cognitive tests. It improves the blood flow to the brain. Also drinking flavanol rich cocoa can regulate the flow of blood to the key parts of the brain, as a result its performance is improved.
Dark chocolates provide cough relief. It contains theobromine which is a chemical that is effective for treating cough. It is better than other cough medicine, as it tastes good and does not have the negative side effects.
It treats diarrhea. Research showed that flavonoids present in dark chocolate help to bind the protein responsible for regulating fluid secretion in the intestine and thus it provides a relief from diarrhea.
Dark chocolate is one of the best cancer fighting foods. It inhibits the cancer cell division and reduces inflammation. While choosing chocolate, make sure it is atleat 70% cocoa.
As a current dental student at Ziauddin University, Saad takes an interest in health, fitness and nutrition. He writes articles based on research through on-line publications as well as consulting various doctors and nutrition and fitness experts. When he's not writing for Health TV, you can find him studying, exercising or watching some of his favourite TV shows.