5 Health Benefits Of Chocolate: From Relieving Cough To Improving Heart Health
Do you like chocolate? Millions of people all over the world consume it every day due to its sweet and unique taste. Chocolate has a bad reputation because it easily can lead to weight gain. The great news is that according to science, chocolate isn’t a junk food anymore. It seems to be a superfood, instead.
Chocolate is good for your health
Chocolate is made from cacao tree seeds and people started to use it hundreds of years ago. The very first mentions date back to the Olmec civilization, located in Mesoamerica.
As it turns out, dark chocolate is loaded with antioxidants that are beneficial for your well-being. Moreover, studies demonstrate that dark chocolate can improve the whole health condition and even reduce the risk of heart issues. But it is very important to be mindful: choose a healthy chocolate that contains at least 70% of cacao.
Let’s take a detailed look at its amazing health benefits:
1. Chocolate can decrease cholesterol levels.
According to the article, published in The Journal of Nutrition, eating chocolate may influence low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol levels. In other words, chocolate can help lower so-called “bad” cholesterol. The researchers conducted an experiment using chocolate bars with plant sterols and cocoa flavanols. The results were really surprising. They found that regular consumption of chocolate as part of a balanced, low-fat diet can help improve cardiovascular health.
2. Chocolate is very nutritious.
Well, people often blame chocolate for its high caloric content, but it can be a real benefit too. Chocolate is very nutritious. It also contains fiber and essential minerals. A 0,22 lbs (100-gram) bar of dark chocolate has about 600 calories! That’s why chocolate should be consumed in moderation. Dark chocolate has plenty of iron, manganese, copper, zinc, and potassium that are important for your body.
3. Chocolate may improve blood flow and lower blood pressure.
Dark chocolate contains flavanols that are beneficial for your arteries. Flavanols can stimulate your blood vessels to relax and this, in turn, may lower high blood pressure. The effect is usually mild, but further research is needed.
4. Chocolate may improve memory and brain function.
Scientists from Harvard Medical School believe that two cups of hot chocolate per day can improve your brain health. Chocolate can help keep your brain in shape and lower memory problems in older adults. Another study suggests that regular eating chocolate (at least once a week) can significantly boost cognitive function.
5. Chocolate can relieve cough.
One study discovered that chocolate could ease cough almost as efficiently as codeine.That’s because it contains theobromine. This chemical may suppress activity in the vagus nerve, a part of the brain that responsible for cough among other things.
Potential risks for chocolate.
Despite the fact that this sweetness is useful, nevertheless it is necessary to carefully approach the choice of a portion:
Chocolate has awesome taste and many health benefits, and there are also some negative effects. As ever, moderation is the best.
This article is purely for informational purposes. Do not self-medicate, and in all cases consult a certified healthcare professional before using any information presented in the article. The editorial board does not guarantee any results and does not bear any responsibility for harm that may result from using the information stated in the article.