Shouldn’t EVERY day be national chocolate day? Perhaps not…. all things in moderation as they say! Fortunately, chocolate is more than just a “treat” or “junk food” – it can do great things for your health! Does the idea of chocolate as health food grab your attention? Sound too good to be true? There’s plenty of evidence!
The Darker the Better
Understand that we’re not talking about the milk chocolate of your youth. We’re talking “grown-up” chocolate. Dark chocolate (70-85% cocoa) provides the greatest concentration of health benefits. It can be more of an acquired taste if you’re used to the kid’s stuff, so work your way up in percentage to the darker end of the spectrum. Soon you will be preferring the richer, more sophisticated taste of dark chocolate.
Fiber, Antioxidants, and Minerals
Dark chocolate has a high concentration of antioxidants – primarily polyphenols and flavanols which are antioxidants with anti-inflammatory, anti-carcinogenic and disease preventative properties. Cocoa beans actually contain more antioxidants than blueberries or acai berries! In addition, dark chocolate is also a great source of fiber, iron, magnesium, copper. Who knew?
Good for your Heart
Studies have shown that chocolate can reduce blood pressure, and may also decrease LDL (bad cholesterol) and increase HDL (good cholesterol). (A box of chocolates on a special occasion can warm your heart too!)
Indications that flavanols in chocolate may protect skin against sun damage have been largely over-estimated – studies have shown that conventional methods of chocolate making seem to reduce the natural concentration of flavanols and negate this effect. Fortunately, chocolate can help improve blood flow to the skin, increase skin density and improve hydration. Either way, always make sure your skin is protected, with Christie’s RECAPTURE 360 + IR Defense Anti-Aging Day Cream.
Go out and celebrate National Chocolate Day and get a healthy, guilt-free glow!