Among the ancient Indians of Mexico, the word chocolate meant “food of the Gods” … a name perfectly suited to this food rich in valuable antioxidant polyphenols. Chocolate, or more precisely cocoa, also contains fiber, amino acids, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, calcium, copper and iron, as well as vitamins A, B1, B2, B3, E, and PP.
These different substances, especially polyphenols, are at the origin of the many properties of chocolate. This factsheet explains how to make the most of the benefits of chocolate on your health.
Health Benefits Of Chocolate
Chocolate has amply demonstrated, scientifically supported studies, various benefits that are largely related to its polyphenols with powerful antioxidant properties, which protect our body against free radicals.
Antioxidant Properties Of Chocolate
Cocoa is extremely rich in polyphenols, which are antioxidants that can delay cellular aging, aging of the skin, the brain and the entire body.
Cardiovascular Benefits Of Chocolate
Chocolate has shown:
- Its ability to lower blood cholesterol;
- Its favorable action on blood pressure;
- Its fluidifying effect of the blood;
- Its preventive action of atherosclerosis;
- And ultimately its preventive action of infarction and stroke
Anticancer Properties Of Chocolate
Scientific work establishes the anti-cancer properties of chocolate, related to polyphenols. The chocolate would be the fourth in the ranking of the 20 most effective foods in this type of prevention (after garlic, blueberries / raspberries / blackberries and dried cranberries).
Anti Stress Properties Of Chocolate
Chocolate has real anti stress properties, even an antidepressant effect, thanks to magnesium, but also to other substances, in particular, phenylethylamine and tryptophan, which is a precursor of serotonin.
Stimulating Properties Of Chocolate
Theobromine and chocolate caffeine fight fatigue, support alertness and boost memory and cognitive functions.
Antitussive Properties Of Chocolate
Chocolate may calm persistent cough: By inhibiting vagus nerve activity, chocolate theobromine can reduce the occurrence of the coughing reflex.
Defeat The Conventional Wisdom About Chocolate!
Consumed in reasonable quantities, chocolate does not make you fat, especially since its glycemic index is relatively low.
Chocolate does not promote constipation; on the contrary, thanks to its fibers it slightly accelerates the intestinal transit.
Chocolate does not cause acne or liver attacks.
It has never been shown that chocolate causes migraines.
Consumed in moderate quantities, dark chocolate is not prohibited for diabetics: choose 70% chocolate, or better 85% cocoa and consume it at the same time as a meal containing fiber and protein.
Choose the best chocolate for your health
Chocolate Rich In Cocoa
It is the cocoa that contains active ingredients beneficial to health. To find out what you eat, choose a chocolate with the cocoa content indicated:
The dark chocolate is richer in cocoa than milk chocolate: choose preferably dark chocolate containing at least 70% cocoa (some contain 85% or more).
White chocolate contains almost no cocoa and has no particular protective effect on health.
On the contrary, a true cocoa powder is the most concentrated in active principles beneficial to health.
Pure Cocoa Butter Chocolate
Choose a chocolate in pure cocoa butter tablet, with the mention ” chocolate containing only cocoa butter without other added fats “.
Indeed cocoa butter has no adverse effect on the cardiovascular system. One of its components, oleic acid, on the contrary, participates in the elimination of bad cholesterol.
Consume The Right Dose Of Chocolate For Your Health
To enjoy the benefits of chocolate on health, it is necessary to consume regularly. However, because of its fat and sugar content, the chocolate in the tablet is very caloric: about 500 calories per 100 g. Excessive consumption can lead to excess calories.
Note: 30 g of chocolate provide about 150 calories; milk chocolate is no more caloric than dark chocolate, it is even slightly less but is comparatively less rich in beneficial active ingredients.
The daily consumption of chocolate recommended to take advantage of its benefits is:
- From 20 to 30 g per day for 70% dark chocolate (100 to 150 calories);
- Or 40g per day of quality milk chocolate (200 calories, a little more difficult to include in a diet where calories are limited);
- Or a large teaspoon of unsweetened black cocoa per day (low in calories).
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