All the benefits of dark chocolate

All the benefits of dark chocolatee

Eating dark chocolate with a high cocoa concentration not only satisfies the desire for a delicious snack but is also good for health. In fact, this food is rich in nutrients that ensure various benefits .

These are the main ones.

It’s very nutritious

Dark chocolate with a high cocoa content is an excellent source from a nutritional point of view , especially as regards fibers and minerals .

Specifically, a 100 gram bar of dark chocolate with 70–85% cocoa contains:

  • 11 grams of fiber
  • 67% of the daily iron requirement
  • 58% of the daily requirement of magnesium
  • 89% of the daily requirement of copper
  • 98% of the daily requirement of manganese

Additionally, dark chocolate is high in potassium , phosphorus , zinc , selenium and oleic acid , a heart -healthy fat also found in olive oil .

However, there is also a reverse side of the coin. Eating this amount, in fact, involves the intake of 600 calories .

Furthermore, in dark chocolate there are also stearic acid which has a neutral effect on cholesterol and palmitic acid which, on the other hand, can increase its levels even if minimally, given that it constitutes only a third of the total fat calories of dark chocolate.

Finally, dark chocolate contains stimulants such as caffeine and theobromine but in smaller quantities than coffee and therefore not capable of affecting sleep quality .

It is a powerful source of antioxidants

Dark chocolate is rich in organic compounds that function as antioxidants . The main ones are polyphenols , flavanols , catechins and their concentration is higher than that of other foods also considered antioxidants, such as blueberries and acai berries .

It can improve blood flow and lower blood pressure

The flavanols in dark chocolate can stimulate the endothelium , the lining of the arteries , to produce nitric oxide , which has among its functions to send signals to the arteries to relax. This reduces the resistance to blood flow and thus improves blood pressure.

Increases good cholesterol and reduces bad cholesterol

Consumption of dark chocolate may improve several important risk factors for heart disease .

Cocoa powder was found in a controlled study to significantly reduce oxidized (bad) LDL cholesterol in men, increase good cholesterol , and lower total bad cholesterol in people with high cholesterol .

Lowering oxidized bad cholesterol occurs because dark chocolate contains an abundance of powerful antioxidants that enter the bloodstream and protect lipoproteins from oxidative damage .

The flavanols in this food can also reduce insulin resistance , which is another common risk factor for heart disease and diabetes .

However, for people with this pathology it is essential to take into consideration the fact that dark chocolate also contains sugar , which can generate the opposite effect.

It can reduce the risk of heart disease

The compounds in dark chocolate appear to be highly protective against LDL oxidation , which over time should cause much less cholesterol to deposit in the arteries, resulting in a lower risk of heart disease .

To say it would also be several long-term observational studies, which show a fairly drastic improvement in this sense.

In one study of 470 elderly men , cocoa was found to reduce the risk of death from heart disease by 50% over 15 years , while two others revealed that eating chocolate at least two or more times a week reduced the risk by 32%. to have calcified plaque in the arteries , and more than five times a week reduces the risk of heart disease by 57% .

Of course, these are observational studies, so it’s not exactly clear whether it’s just chocolate that reduces the risk. However, since the biological process of lowering blood pressure is known, it is plausible that eating dark chocolate regularly could be positive from this point of view.

It can protect your skin from the sun

The bioactive compounds in dark chocolate may also be great for improving skin health .

In particular, it is the flavanols that protect against sun damage, improve blood flow to the skin and increase its density and hydration.

The minimal erythematous dose is the minimum amount of UVB radiation needed to cause redness of the skin 24 hours after exposure. In a study of 30 people, it was observed that this more than doubled after consuming dark chocolate with a high flavanol content for 12 weeks.

It could improve brain function

Dark chocolate may also improve brain function .

A study of healthy volunteers showed that eating high flavanol cocoa for 5 days increased blood flow to the brain .

Cacao can also significantly improve cognitive function in older adults with mild cognitive impairment, verbal fluency, and several risk factors for the disease.

Additionally, cocoa contains stimulants like caffeine and theobromine, which can increase short-term alertness and responsiveness.

Here’s what happens to eating chocolate every day.

That’s why it’s best not to eat chocolate before going to sleep .



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