Dark chocolate is the chocolate of choice when you want to say “I love you” in a healthy way.
Chocolate comes from Cacao, a bean full of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Many studies link the properties of the cacao bean to health benefits for your heart and overall body functioning.
In moderation, dark chocolate is believed to provide multiple health benefits. This is because of its high levels of flavonoids, which are antioxidants that protect cells from damage caused by free radicals. Free radicals are unstable molecules that can alter and weaken cells, according to the Cleveland Clinic.
Research has found that flavanols, which are the main type of flavonoid found in cocoa and chocolate, have potential influences on vascular health, including lowering blood pressure, improving blood flow to the brain and heart, and making blood platelets less sticky and less likely to clot, the Cleveland Clinic says.
Choose dark chocolate with a high percentage of cocoa (70 percent or higher) to give your body more of these healthy antioxidants and benefits, like these:
Flavanols are the primary type of flavonoid found in dark chocolate that helps to lower blood pressure and improve blood flow to the heart and brain. Dark chocolate flavanols can also help make blood platelets less sticky, reducing the risk of blood clots and stroke.
A 9-year study in Sweden proves that of 31,000 women who ate a couple of servings of dark chocolate a week reduced their risk of heart failure by a third. If you want to increase that consumption to a serving a day, we won’t judge! A long-term study in Germany found that having one square of dark chocolate a day could lower blood pressure and reduce risk of heart attack or stroke by almost 40 percent!
Research has shown flavonoids, antioxidants and zinc found in dark chocolate help the immune system fight inflammation. Choose chocolate that contains at least 70 percent cacao to help boost immunity.
Magnesium intake can calm stress, improve mood and enhance sleep. Studies prove that consuming chocolate can help improve your mood and make you feel calmer and more content. Dark chocolate stimulates the production of endorphins, chemicals in the brain that creates feelings of pleasure.
The compounds found in chocolate can improve blood flow to the brain. One study found a link between chocolate and a lower risk of stroke, while another study found chocolate may also prevent memory decline.
This is important as researchers look for ways to prevent Alzheimer’s disease. According to Harvard Medical School, both short term and long term consumption of flavonols found in dark chocolate can improve memory and reaction times as soon as two hours after eating it! In addition, studies showed improved blood flow, oxygen levels, and nerve function in the brain.
Research shows that the flavonoids in dark chocolate help absorb UV light, increase blood flow to the skin, improve skin texture, and increase skin hydration. While research shows that regular consumption of flavanol-rich chocolate may help protect the skin against harmful UV light.
Here at Tennessee Hydration & Wellness, our Premium IV Therapy contains antioxidants, magnesium, zinc and many other ingredients to help with stress, mood and immunity. Please contact our clinic or walk in for more information.