It is hard to find a person who does not like chocolate. It is an indulgent treat but is mainly associated with weight gain and acne. However, recent studies have revealed the health benefits of eating chocolate, not just the dark ones. It is a metaphor for how healthy people eat. When consumed in moderation, it offers a variety of well-being gains. Here we have collected some benefits of developing a healthy relationship with chocolate.
What is Chocolate?
Chocolate begins its journey as cacao pods. Pods contain seeds which are also known as beans. The seeds get extracted, fermented, dried, and roasted into cacao beans. Next, the shells are removed, and the remaining cocoa nibs are processed into the product we love: Chocolate.
Chocolate is slightly bitter and acidic in its purest form. So manufacturers add sugars and fillers to raise the pH to be neutral. Raw chocolate is best for your health as it contains 100% cocoa. Dark chocolate usually contains 35% to 99% cocoa. Milk chocolate may have 10% cocoa, and white chocolate is free from cocoa.
The greater the percentage of cocoa in your chocolate bar, the better it is for your health. Conversely, the chocolate bar rich in sugar or fillers is the thing you should avoid.
Chocolate Can Help You Lose Weight
Chocolate with 85% or more cocoa can help you lose weight. You can try eating a piece of dark chocolate 20 minutes before eating something or after your meal. It will cut your appetite impressively by 50%. This is because cocoa contains chemicals that trigger the brain’s hormones, telling you to stop eating more. Remember, milk chocolate does not fall in this category; that is responsible for increasing your blood sugar level and leaving you craving to eat more.
Chocolate Gives Your Brain a Boost
Do you know people who eat chocolate more often are the smartest people around? This is because of the flavanol content of cocoa. It increases blood circulation in the brain and boosts memory and other cognitive functions. Consuming cocoa-rich chocolate on a daily basis enhances attention, memory processing speed, and verbal fluency. In addition, it prevents mental decline.
Chocolate Promotes Fresher & Younger Looking Skin
Flavonoids are the potent components of chocolate. Without even realizing it, they get to work on your skin and act as a filter to harmful UV rays. But do not get us wrong, you cannot neglect the importance of wearing sunscreen while eating cocoa-rich chocolate. When your skin is protected from the sun’s rays, it looks healthy, younger, and fresher.
Chocolate Boosts Your Energy Levels
If you struggle to drink less coffee throughout the day without hitting the caffeine, dark chocolate can help because 100g of it contains 43mg of caffeine. It is beneficial for athletes or fitness freaks. Thanks to the ability of cocoa to increase the blood flow, that leads to carrying more oxygen to muscles.
Chocolate Makes You Happy
Chocolate not only tastes good but makes you feel happy as well. Phenylethylamine is an organic compound in cocoa that acts as an antidepressant when combined with dopamine already produced in your brain. It stimulates the feeling of falling in love and boosts your mood significantly.