The Benefits Of Eating Chocolate
- Combat depression. Eating chocolate significantly increases levels of serotonin, the neurotransmitter responsible for pleasure and well-being, which is very low in depressed states.
- Increased libido. Chocolate is an amazing natural aphrodisiac, and its intake is linked to libido levels, especially for women.
- Rich in magnesium: This mineral is found in cocoa, and chocolate is an excellent antioxidant.
- Keep your heart healthy: In addition to all the benefits you may experience, chocolate keeps your heart strong and healthy thanks to its high flavonoid content.
- This article is purely informative not authorized for any medical prescription. If you have any illness or discomfort, you are advised to consult your doctor.
Curious If Chocolate Is Healthy For You Heres How Dark Chocolate Affects Your Heart Health
Recent health studies show that eating dark chocolate can drastically reduce the low-density lipoprotein in your blood. Low-density lipoprotein or LDL is what is also known as, bad cholesterol. Lowering LDL particles in your body can also reduce the risk of developing coronary heart disease, the leading cause of death in America for both men and women.
The cocoa content in chocolate determines its health levels. Dark chocolates high cocoa level is what makes it more beneficial than other chocolates, including milk and white chocolate. When youre searching for a healthy dark chocolate, its best to look for one that has been processed as little as possible. Search for shorter ingredient lists with names you recognize.
Consuming dark chocolate in moderate amounts each day has been proven to lower blood pressure by approximately two to three points. It can also improve blood vessel function and heart circulation in just one month.
Along with lowering bad cholesterol, dark chocolate has also led to the improvement of good cholesterol levels, also called HDL cholesterol. Dark chocolate contains flavonoids, which have antioxidant capabilities.
Can I Get Cholesterol
The type of chocolate you consume matters when it comes to eating chocolate for good health because it’s the properties of the cocoa that offer the health benefits.
Dark chocolate, because it contains more cocoa than other palatable chocolate products, has higher amounts of flavonoids and thus is more likely to exert a protective effect against heart disease.
To make the most of adding chocolate to your diet to lower your cholesterol, choose products with a high cocoa content that have the least amount of processing, which lowers the flavonoid content.
Products with high amounts of cocoa are proud of it, and percentages are prominently displayed on the label. Organic chocolate has usually undergone less processing than non-organic brands.
Additionally, other forms of chocolate, such as Halloween candy and hot chocolate, may contain undesirable ingredients that may raise cholesterol levels, such as whole milk.
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May Reduce Heart Disease Risk
The compounds in dark chocolate appear to be highly protective against the oxidation of LDL.
In the long term, this should cause much less cholesterol to lodge in the arteries, resulting in a lower risk of heart disease.
In fact, several long-term observational studies show a fairly drastic improvement.
In a study of 470 older men, cocoa was found to reduce the risk of death from heart disease by 50% over 15 years .
Another study revealed that eating chocolate two or more times per week lowered the risk of having calcified plaque in the arteries by 32%. Eating chocolate less frequently had no effect .
Yet another study showed that eating dark chocolate more than five times per week lowered the risk of heart disease by 57% .
A 2017 clinical trial found that subjects who consumed almonds with or without dark chocolate showed improved LDL cholesterol levels .
Of course, these four studies are observational, so its unclear exactly if it was the chocolate that reduced the risk.
However, since the biological process is known , its plausible that regularly eating dark chocolate may reduce the risk of heart disease.
Observational studies show a drastic reduction in heart disease risk among those who consume the most chocolate.
Dark Chocolate Lowers Cholesterol Levels
Ahchocolate. Every time theres a news report about any potential health benefits associated with this addictive substance, folks run out and buy truckloads of the stuff. And now, the latest news might make some diabetics dance: research out of Hull University in England showed that diabetics who ate dark chocolate improved their cholesterol levels.
But keep reading before you run over to Costco to pick up a five-pound box of King-Size Dark Chocolate Reeses Peanut Butter Cups.
First, the study was quite limited, following just 12 people with Type II diabetes. The researchers fed these 12 volunteers chocolate bars daily for a period of 16 weeks. Six of the volunteers got normal chocolate bars and six got chocolate bars enriched with polyphenols. And second, those who received the enriched bars showed a small amount of improvement in their cholesterol profiles. Overall levels of cholesterol dropped, while levels of good cholesterol rose.
It is true that polyphenols, also found in wine, legumes, fruits, and vegetables, have been shown to reduce the risk for cardiovascular disease. Among the polyphenols, the flavonoids are especially beneficial in this regard. And while it is true that flavonoids are found in chocolate, there are far better sources. Plus chocolate brings with it more than its share of fat and sugar. For example there are 16 grams of fat in bars of the U.K.s most popular brands.
Theo Salted Almond 70% Dark Chocolate
Per 1 oz : 141 calories, 11 g fat , 47 mg sodium, 12.5 g carbs, 2.5 g fiber, 8 g sugar, 2.5 g protein
We like this entry-level bar because the bitterness doesn’t hit you the way that it does with 80% or higher cacao bars. “The higher the percentage of cacao, the better, but you’ll still get some health benefits at ,” says registered dietician, Isabel Smith, MD, RD, CDN. The almonds also offer an added health boost thanks to their combination of plant-based protein, fiber, and healthy fats, which work together to keep hunger and cravings at bay.
Chocolate For Cholesterol Reduction:
Chocolates, especially, dark chocolates contain high amounts of 18-carbon stearic acid. Stearic acids are known to increase the bad cholesterol in the blood.
However, the stearic acid saturated with 18-carbon atoms found in chocolates has been shown to lower plasma and LDL cholesterol level in blood streams.
Thus, chocolates with high content of 18-carbon stearic acid reduce cholesterol levels in the blood and can be consumed as a substitute for high carbohydrates snacks like potato chips, muffins, bagels, etc.
Several doctors recommend consumption of chocolate for cholesterol reduction.
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White Vs Milk Vs Dark Chocolate
Dark vs. milk vs. white chocolate
White chocolate is made from a combination of sugar, cocoa butter, milk products, vanilla, and a fatty component known as lecithin .
It is most notable for its delicate ivory color. Because the sugar is not balanced by the solids found in both milk and dark chocolate, it is theoretically the sweetest chocolate available.
Milk chocolate is made from cocoa solids, cocoa butter, milk in some form, and sugar. It is well-known for being sweet and creamy. To be called milk chocolate, chocolate must contain at least 12% milk.
Dark chocolate is known to have less sugar than both milk chocolate and white chocolate. It does not typically contain any sort of milk. As previously stated, it is made from cocoa solids, cocoa butter, and sugar.
Interesting to know
Ruby chocolate Belgian chocolate manufacturer, Barry Callebaut, discovered a fourth type of chocolate, ruby chocolate, in 2017. This unique chocolate stands out from the rest with its red-pink hue. Its not colored white chocolate, but a color obtained from a specific type of cacao the ruby cocoa bean.
This popular new cacao variety is ideal for making bold, fruit-forward chocolate delicacies as well as bright Instagram-worthy chocolate confections.
Alter Eco Dark Blackout 85% Organic Cacao
Per 1 oz : 170 calories, 15 g fat , 10 g carbs, 3.5 g fiber, 4 g sugar, 2 g protein
One thing to watch for when buying chocolate is the sugar contenteven when you’re shopping for dark. That’s because consuming too much sweet stuff can increase your risk of serious health problems like diabetes and cancer, not to mention, it commonly leads to energy crashes. “Aim for 10 to 15 grams of sugar or less per serving,” suggests Smith. And more often than not, a typical serving size on the package surpasses the single ounce we recommend. This Alter Eco bar has only 4 grams per ounce and 6 grams per serving, making it a solid choice. Dialing down portions of sugary foods is one of the best ways to lose 10 pounds fast.
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May Improve Cognition And Boost Your Mood
According to studies, chocolate enhances neural activity in parts of the brain associated with pleasure and reward, which reduces stress and improves mood.
A comprehensive review found that five of eight studies on chocolate and mood showed benefits in mood and three showed strong evidence of cognitive enhancement. The high quantities of flavonoids in dark chocolate may be responsible for the improvements in brain function.
Keep in mind that the majority of research used far larger amounts of chocolate than the recommended daily consumption .
Lilys Intensely Dark Chocolate
Lilys Intensely Dark Chocolate is our favorite pick for people who are weight-conscious or who are concerned with their sugar intake. Instead of using sugar to offset the bitter taste of raw cocoa, Lilys uses erythritol to keep the sugar content at zero.
Whether youre a keto dieter looking for a treat thats keto-friendly or a dieter looking to lose weight without forgoing the occasional chocolate, its a great low sugar option.
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What Not To Eat When You Have High Cholesterol
Here are 4 high-cholesterol foods that can negatively impact your health.
- Fried Foods. Fried foods â such as deep-fried meats and cheese sticks â are high-cholesterol and should be avoided whenever possible.
- Fast Food.
Here are some of the best morning foods for improving your numbers.
High Cholesterol: Nutritionist Reveals Top Prevention Tips
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Cholesterol is not intrinsically harmful, in fact, your body needs it to build healthy cells. High levels of cholesterol are harmful, however, because it causes fatty deposits to develop in your blood vessels. This increases a persons risk of heart disease, a major cause of death in the UK and worldwide. Fortunately, by adding these four delicious foods in your daily diet your risk can be significantly reduced.
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Can Dark Chocolate Lower Your Cholesterol
Could it really be true that indulging in a delicious, organic dark chocolate bar lowers cholesterol? If you have high cholesterol, your dreams may have come true.
Dark chocolate is one of many foods that have been shown to lower cholesterol in clinical trials. But, that doesn’t mean you should eat it with every meal.
Eating dark chocolate should be part of a change toward a healthier lifestyle if you’re serious about lowering your cholesterol. Give yourself some dark chocolate as a reward for eating a healthy diet, losing weight, and reaching your exercise goals.
Dark Chocolate And Cholesterol: The Ultimate Guide And What You Need To Know
The most comprehensive guide about dark chocolate, cacao, and your cholesterol is here! You will read about the effects of cacao’s powerful components and their impact on blood fats.
Dietary and healthy food recommendations are always changing. It’s hard to know what is right for your health and what isn’t. Chocolate and cholesterol are among the most controversial areas in nutrition.
Then the question is: is dark chocolate healthy for our cholesterol levels? This ultimate guide is the answer.
One of the most common questions we get as craft chocolate connoisseurs and me personally as a doctor is: Isn’t chocolate full of fat and sugar? Would it increase my cholesterol?
I’m an endocrinologist, a doctor who specializes in metabolic conditions, as well as a chocolate enthusiast for more than 10 years. I felt compelled to research and publish on this exciting topic.
This article is for those of you interested in preserving your health, primarily through real food. If you want to know how to keep your cholesterol levels on the healthy side and enjoy a bar of flavorful dark chocolate, then keep reading.
EPISODE 1 – WHAT IS CHOLESTEROL?
So, what if dark chocolate can help you have a healthier cholesterol profile? As a result, it might help you avoid cardiovascular complications. In Episode 2 , we will explain a few scientific studies that show that delicious craft chocolate improves blood cholesterol levels.
But what does dark chocolate have to do with all of this?
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Dark Chocolate Can Improve Brain Health
Due to the cardiovascular benefits mentioned above, Hunnes says flavonoids can help increase blood flow to the brain. As a byproduct of this, you will get more oxygen to your brain and move toxins out of the brain more quickly. This protects your brain and can help prevent neurodegenerative conditions, like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.
A small 2018 study stated that flavonoids can cross the blood-brain barrier and have a positive effect on electrical brain activity, which can improve attention and memory. In this study, the participants consumed 6.8 grams of dark chocolate to reap these benefits.
Hunnes says the increased blood flow may be the mechanism by which dark chocolate is believed to improve memory, and therefore, eating small amounts of dark chocolate each day can have a beneficial effect on overall cognition.
Dove Silky Smooth Dark Chocolate Singles Bar
Per 1 oz : 153 calories, 9 g fat , 17 g carbs, 2 g fiber, 13 g sugar, 1.4 g protein
Dove touts this bar as being “made from the finest quality cacao,” but don’t be fooled! In reality, the cacao used in this chocolate bar is anything but high quality. That’s because it’s been processed with alkali, a process that decreases the quantity and quality of cancer- and cardiovascular-disease-fighting flavanols and antioxidants. It gets worse: This bar also contains artificial flavors, chemical compounds researchers have shown to correspond with increased levels of inflammatory markers because of their unfamiliarity with your body’s immune system.
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May Help Prevent Depression
And it’s not just the physical brain chocolate can help. The theobromine in dark chocolate can cause that energy spike and subsequent crash, but the anandamide in chocolate acts as a mood and energy boost in the long-term for a slow burning calming enhancer.
Another chemical that helps mood is phenethylamine, which is also found in dark chocolate. The body metabolizes this into serotonin and that regulates mood. If you are not making enough, supplementing through phenethylamine in chocolate can bring you back to your base needs. A survey of more than 13,000 adults compared their self-reported chocolate eating with depressive symptoms and found that those who consumed dark chocolate in the past 24 hours were 70 percent less likely to feel depression.
Heart Healthy Benefits Of Chocolate
The favorite choice for the term “Dark Chocolate” is 1 block of Special Dark Chocolate Bar Candies which has about 1 mg of cholesterol.The amount of cholesterol for a variety of types and serving sizes of Dark Chocolate is shown below.
Short answer. Reeses Peanut Butter Cups are one of the most popular chocolate candies that are high in fat, calories and sugar. There are some additional additives that are of concern and ingesting a large amount of this product can lead to excess weight, risk of type 2 diabetes, elevated cholesterol and triglycerides and risk of metabolic syndrome.
via target.com. Dark chocolate should be intense, decadent and not overly sweet. Chocolove delivered on all these counts with their Strong Dark Chocolate . Testers loved this chocolate bar because the flavor was wonderfully deep with some coffee-like notes and a shockingly creamy texture that left everyone wanting to savor just one more square.
Now of course, milk chocolate is completely out of the question because the milk, like in the tea, blocks the positive effects. But even dairy-free dark chocolate is made out of things we dont want: the fat and the sugar. The fat is saturated cocoa butter, and is one of the few plant fats thats actually bad for us it raises our cholesterol.
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Manage High Blood Pressure
Eating dark chocolate is a great way to incorporate more cacao into your diet, which can help to lower your high blood pressure! The flavonoids in dark chocolate have been found to produce nitric oxide, which causes blood vessels to relax and lower high blood pressure. As long as you mind the amount you consume and consider your intake of fats, sugars, and calories carefully, dark chocolate is a great way to indulge in a sweet treat without messing up your heart-healthy diet.
An Excellent Source Of Antioxidants
Dark chocolate contains a high concentration of organic compounds that are biologically active and act as antioxidants. Polyphenols, flavanols, and catechins are a few examples.
According to a study published in the Chemistry Central Journal, cocoa and dark chocolate included higher antioxidant activity, polyphenols, and flavanols than any other fruit studied, including blueberries and acai berries.
Antioxidants are important because they protect cells and tissues from free radical damage. Free radicals are unstable molecules that can alter and weaken cells. Consider them an insurance policy against the deterioration caused by stress, poor food, and the natural aging process.
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