Saturday, December 8, 2012

The Health Benefits of Eating Chocolate

Yummy-looking Chocolate Keyboard
Do you love chocolate?  This might look like a dumb question but actually, I don’t like it that much. But for those who love the dark sticky stuff, how healthy is it?
My research indicates that chocolate is made from cocoa beans and because it is derived from a plant, it contains flavonoids, which are antioxidants.
In general terms, antioxidants help to protect the body from the negative effects of free radicals contained in many fatty foods. These free radicals have been identified as potential causal factors of heart disease.
Flavonoids also help to relax blood pressure by producing nitric acid and helping to maintain hormonal balance in the body. Dark chocolate has been particularly identified to be rich in flavonoids even beating fruits such as strawberries.
Chocolate also stimulates endorphin production which gives you a pleasurable feeling like what you feel when you are “in love.” It also contains Serotonin which helps to reduce depression. It also contains stimulants such as caffeine and theobromine which help you to stay active and alert.
The fats contained in dark chocolate are: oleic acid, palmitic acid and stearic acid. Out of the three, only palmitic acid is known to raise the cholesterol count in your body. However, over-indulgence in chocolate might lead to you becoming obese.
Chocolate is quite a complex substance with over 300 compounds and chemicals, a lot of which are still being studied to understand how they work in the body and what their effects are.
So far, (dark) chocolate gets the nod of approval and I suppose you chocolate lovers can continue enjoying the stuff. For now, I must stop this article HERE.

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