10 Great excuses for eating chocolate (dark chocolate)
Everyone seems to be telling you not eat chocolate. They say it will make you put on weight, it will cause breakouts, and it’s bad for your heart, but what if we were to tell you that eating chocolate, in moderation, of course, actually has some very important health benefits? Sure, munching your way through a whole bar of chocolate in one sitting might not be such a good idea, but a few squares of dark chocolate could be as good for you as it tastes. If you are chocoholic but you always feel guilty after you indulge, here are ten perfect excuses for treating yourself to some dark chocolate.
1. It slows the effects of ageing
Chocolate may not be the elixir of youth, but it can certainly help slow down the aging process a little bit. Dark chocolate is a great source of antioxidants, which fight the free radicals that cause oxidative stress. There have been many studies that have proven that consuming antioxidants can slow the onset of the signs of ageing on the skin.
2. Dark chocolate is good for the cardiovascular system
A little bit of what you like does you good and that’s certainly the case with dark chocolate. Eating small amounts of dark chocolate doesn’t harm your heart at all; in fact, it’s very good for the cardiovascular system. Dark chocolate helps to keep the arteries flexible and it stops the white blood cells clinging to the insides of the arteries. That means that eating dark chocolate could help stop your arteries becoming clogged.
3. Dark chocolate can even help protect you from the sun
Eating chocolate could even help protect you from the sun. It’s no replacement for SPF, but researchers in London found that a group of test subjects who were asked to eat dark chocolate every day for three months were far more resistant to the effects of sunlight on their skin, than the participants who ate no chocolate at all in that time.
4. Dark chocolate reduces stress
We all knew that eating chocolate make you feel relaxed and calm, but now there is scientific evidence that proves the calming effect that chocolate has on your mind. A Swiss study proved, beyond all doubt, that eating dark chocolate every day significantly reduces the amounts of cortisol, which is the stress hormone, so chocolate really is a good comfort food after all.
5. Dark chocolate is good for your brain
There have been lots of studies that have shown that dark chocolate can be good for the brain. It can improve your memory and it has been shown that dark chocolate can be good for people recovering from a stroke. Research conducted by the Johns Hopkins University demonstrated that eating dark chocolate can help to prevent any further damage occurring to brain after a stroke.
6. Dark chocolate even fights tooth decay
Believe it or not, chocolate can actually prevent tooth decay, not cause it. Dark chocolate has a high theobromine content which is an alkaline substance that kills the bacteria that can cause tooth decay. It does need to be chocolate with a high cocoa content, though, or the sugar will counteract the benefit of the theobromine.
7. Dark chocolate can prevent heart disease
Dark chocolate contains ingredients that have powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties and that could help prevent you developing heart disease. In a long term Swedish study that spanned three years, it was found that women who ate dark chocolate once or twice a week reduced their risk of heart disease by as much as one third.
8. Dark chocolate can help prevent cancer
The high levels of flavonoids and antioxidants found in dark chocolate help to prevent cancer by fighting oxidative stress, reducing inflammation, and inhibiting cell division. There have been a number of studies that have ranked dark chocolate high up in the list of cancer fighting foods, alongside things like red wine, garlic, and blueberries.
9. Dark chocolate could help you lose weight
Eating chocolate to lose weight? Now there’s a novel idea! It’s true, though. Apparently, if you let a piece of dark chocolate melt slowly in your mouth, about twenty minutes before you eat a meal, it triggers the release of the hormones that will tell your brain that you are full, so you will eat less food. It will also decrease your desire for a snack later on.
10. Dark chocolate improves your circulation
Dark chocolate also has blood thinning and anti-clotting properties, so it will help improve the flow of blood around your body. As well as improving your complexion and the effectiveness of your muscles, it could also improve your vision. Researchers at Reading University, in England, found that the increase in the blood supply to your eyes that eating dark chocolate causes, enabled people to see more clearly.
Do you know other benefits of dark chocolate?
Stay happy and healthy!