Chocolate is a fairly common food product, an unmistakable catalyst for joy, a reliable source of comfort, a mood enhancer, and an indicator of romance. But is it good for your health?
If you consume it in large quantities, then, of course, not. But there are many scientifically proven ways in which chocolate - really good chocolate, dark, with at least 70% cocoa in the composition - is very good for you.
The research continued for quite a long time and it was found that chocolate is good for the heart, blood circulation and, in particular, the brain. In this regard, it has also been confirmed by experts that dark chocolate may be beneficial for problems such as autism, obesity and diabetes. In many cases, it has also been proven that chocolate is not the least merit in the normal functioning of the brain, even in old age.
Chocolate is good for the heart and circulatory system
A recent study has shown that dark chocolate helps restore flexibility in arteries while preventing white blood cells from sticking to the walls of blood vessels. It is the latter that is the first reason for clogged arteries.
Chocolate Reduces the Risk of Stroke
Researchers in Finland found that consuming chocolate reduced the risk of stroke by as much as 17% on average.
Chocolate is rich in minerals
Dark chocolate is full of beneficial minerals like potassium, zinc and selenium. For example, 100 grams of dark chocolate provides 67 percent of the daily value for iron.
Chocolate lowers cholesterol levels
The cocoa in chocolate has been shown to lower the level of "bad" (LDL) cholesterol while increasing the level of "good" cholesterol and also reduce the risk of heart disease.
Chocolate protects the skin
The flavonols in dark chocolate can protect your skin from sun damage. If you don't have sunscreen on hand on a sunny day, chocolate is not a bad alternative. For a short time, of course.
Chocolate helps you lose weight
Chocolate can help you lose weight. Neurologist Will Klauer claims that a small piece of chocolate melted on the tongue 20 minutes before a meal triggers the release of hormones in the brain that are responsible for feeling full. Thus, it automatically reduces the amount of food you are about to consume.
Chocolate is good for moms and babies
A Finnish study found that chocolate reduces stress levels in expectant mothers, and that babies of such mothers smiled more often than offspring of parents who do not consume chocolate.
Chocolate helps prevent diabetes
Cocoa chocolate has been shown to be indicated for use when it is necessary to improve insulin sensitivity. Thus, dark chocolate - in moderation - can delay or even prevent diabetes.
Chocolate is good for the brain
Flavanols prevent memory loss in older adults and also have anti-inflammatory properties that can be very helpful in treating brain injuries such as concussions.
Chocolate makes you feel better
Chocolate contains phenylethylamine (PEA), the same chemical your brain makes when you fall in love. It is PEA that sends the body a signal to produce endorphins.
Chocolate is a processed product from the beans of the cocoa tree. His homeland is considered to be South and Central America. Usually chocolate is in the form of a bar, but it did not appear immediately.
Until the 17th century, chocolate was considered a bitter and cold drink, which the Aztecs obtained from crushed cocoa beans and whipped with water. According to some versions, the word "chocolate" is translated as "bitter water" or "drink for whipping."
Then, in the 18th century, Europeans began adding milk, spices, sugar to the chocolate drink and heating it. It was only in 1842 that bar chocolate appeared in Great Britain. This happened due to the fact that 14 years earlier, the Dutchman came up with an easy way to squeeze cocoa butter from grated beans. The hard bar gradually replaced the now familiar liquid chocolate. Nowadays, chocolate is considered a traditional treat for the holidays. There are even museums of this sweet: in Cologne, Bruges. The only monument in the world dedicated to chocolate is erected under Vladimir.
Chocolate Day is celebrated in September. An interesting world record was also set: a British firm prepared tiles weighing almost 6 tons. She got into the Guinness Book of Records. Bitter chocolate is made from cocoa powder, cocoa butter and powdered sugar. This variety has a strong aroma and the bitterest taste. Also, such chocolate is called dark, for its almost black color.
It is in dark chocolate that the highest concentration of nutrients contained in cocoa. Moreover, there is much less sugar in it.
Dark chocolate, like red wine, contains substances from the flavonoid group. They are extremely beneficial for blood vessels and heart. A lot of dark chocolate and antioxidants. They fight oxidative stress - free radical damage to cells in the body. Antioxidant properties are due to the presence of catechins and polyphenols, which are superior in activity to the same substances from blueberries. These natural compounds are commonly found in plants. They reduce the amount of free radicals - active particles that damage the cells of the body.
Bitter chocolate helps fight mental overload and improves cognitive performance in older people. A study was conducted with the participation of 2 thousand elderly people. The relationship between the intake of foods rich in flavonoids and mental performance was studied. Chocolate, tea, wine were tested. As a result, people who ate dark chocolate scored better than others.
- Scores of people were killed late Monday after a tanker transporting gasoline exploded in Cap-Haitien, Haitis second largest city, according to Haiti officials