Friday, June 4, 2010

Do You Have A Chocolate Addiction?

I just read some very good news in a Medical Journal! The article said that dark chocolate is very healthy for you

You may ask 'Why is Dark Chocolate Healthy?'

Chocolate is made from plants, which means it contains many of the health benefits of dark vegetables. These benefits are from flavonoids, which act as antioxidants. Dark chocolate contains a large number of antioxidants (nearly 8 times the number found in strawberries). Flavonoids also help relax blood pressure through the production of nitric oxide, and balance certain hormones in the body.

Heart Health Benefits of Dark Chocolate:

Dark chocolate is good for your heart. A small bar of it everyday can help keep your heart and cardiovascular system running well. Two heart health benefits of dark chocolate are:

Studies have shown that consuming a small bar of dark chocolate everyday can reduce blood pressure in individuals with high blood pressure.

Dark chocolate has also been shown to reduce LDL cholesterol (the bad cholesterol) by up to 10 percent.

Other Benefits of Dark Chocolate:

Chocolate also holds benefits apart from protecting your heart:

It tastes good

It stimulates endorphin production, which gives a feeling of pleasure

It contains serotonin, which acts as an anti-depressant

It contains Theo bromine, caffeine and other substances which are stimulants

Doesn't Chocolate Have a lot of Fat?

Here is some more good news -- some of the fats in chocolate do not impact your cholesterol.

Chocolate Tip 1 - Balance the Calories:

This information doesn't mean that you should eat a pound of chocolate a day. Chocolate is still a high-calorie, high-fat food. Most of the studies done used no more than 100 grams, or about 3.5 ounces, of dark chocolate a day to get the benefits.

If you eat half a bar of chocolate a day, you must balance those 200 calories by eating less of something else. Cut out other sweets or snacks and replace them with chocolate to keep your total calories the same.

Chocolate Tip 2 - Go for Dark Chocolate:

Dark chocolate has far more antioxidants than milk or white chocolate. These other two chocolates cannot make any health claims. Dark chocolate has 65 percent or higher cocoa content.

So there you have it - straight from a Medical Journal! I am so happy!

However, remember 'all things in moderation.' :-)


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