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Everyone loves eating chocolate, there’s no denying that. Sure, there are people who supposedly don’t like sweets and candy but even they can’t resist an occasional bite.When it comes to maintaining a healthy diet most of the things on the menu aren’t there for the taste. Quite often we find ourselves craving the familiar old taste of something we loved.
good for cholesterol
There are plenty of cacao health benefits, one of them being its positive influence on your overall cholesterol. Cacao butter found in dark chocolate contains the same amount of oleic, stearic and palmitic acids. Even though stearic and palmitic acids are basically saturated fats, their effect on cholesterol seems to be neutral. The palmitic acid can raise your cholesterol level but its amount in dark chocolate is too low to cause any damage at all. Luckily there are many plant nutrients contained in dark chocolate which make up for the palmitic acid.
According to numerous studies, there are some interesting effects of dark chocolate on cholesterol. Polyphenols found in dark chocolate’s cocoa can be responsible for cholesterol control; after consuming dark chocolate for three weeks subjects showed increased levels of HDL (good) cholesterol. And after a 15-day consumption of polyphenol-rich dark chocolate, there was a decrease of LDL - bad cholesterol.
improves cognitive function
Dark chocolate is known for its ability to boost memory and focus. Research shows that “acute as well as chronic ingestion of flavanol-rich cocoa is associated with increased blood flow to cerebral gray matter and it has been suggested that cocoa flavanols might be beneficial in conditions with reduced cerebral blood flow, including dementia and stroke.” The results showed that after consuming flavonoid-rich foods there was an improvement in several cognitive abilities and that the results were dose influenced.
better blood pressure and blood sugar
There are over 75 scientific articles regarding the correlation between dark chocolate and blood pressure. According to a study from 2015, there’s a huge difference between consuming white chocolate and high-cocoa polyphenol-rich dark chocolate. The subjects who were type 2 diabetics consumed 25 grams of both chocolates during an eight week period. The results went hugely in favor of dark chocolate showing decreases in both blood pressure and blood sugar levels.
high antioxidant levels
One of the most impressive dark chocolate facts is that it’s considered a superfood. In a study performed by Hershey Co which was published in the Chemistry Central Journal, dark chocolate was compared to superfruits like acai, cranberry, blueberry, and pomegranate. All dark chocolate products which were tested in the study contained natural or non-alkalized cocoa. Alkalinization of cocoa was proven to eradicate healthy polyphenolic compounds.
So, whenever you feel cravings for something sweet go for a piece of delicious but healthy dark chocolate. Not only will you satisfy your sweet tooth but knowing all this you’ll feel good about it too.