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What Are the Real Health Benefits of Eating Dark Chocolate?

  • 2 min read

It may sound too good to be true, but the science doesn’t lie: dark chocolate really is healthy for you.

Dark chocolate is full of antioxidants like flavonoids, and regular consumption in moderation has been proven to help protect heart health and boost cognitive function. 

It is important to note that only chocolate that is 70% cocoa or higher will offer these benefits but luckily, we have a number of bars that pass this test so you can trust that your chocolate is as good for your whole body as it is for your tastebuds.

Dark Chocolate is Good For Your Heart

One of the most notable benefits dark chocolate has to offer is its track record of reducing the risk of both heart attacks and strokes. A 2020 study conducted by the European Society of Cardiology found that, upon reviewing five decades worth of research, “compared with consuming chocolate less than once a week, eating chocolate more than once a week was associated with an 8% decreased risk of coronary artery disease.”

This is likely due to the fact that regular dark chocolate consumption has been linked to a decrease in calcified atherosclerotic plaque which often blocks coronary arteries and is a leading cause of heart attacks.

Additionally, dark chocolate lowers LDL cholesterol which clogs arteries and can lead to heart disease. 

On top of all that, a decade-long Finnish experiment published in 2012 concluded that “moderate chocolate consumption may lower the risk of stroke.” The scientists in this wide-ranging study followed over 37,000 men and tracked both their dark chocolate consumption and whether or not they endured a stroke. At the end of ten years, they determined that a higher amount of chocolate in one’s diet led to a lower chance of having a stroke, meaning eating dark chocolate can help protect your heart’s functionality in a number of significant ways.

Dark Chocolate’s Healthy Effects on Your Brain

As if this wasn’t enough good news, dark chocolate is also chock full of antioxidants which have long been known to reduce inflammation and support healthy cognitive functions.

The name antioxidant is given to any substance that stops oxidation, a process that can lead to cell damage, and helps our systems get rid of harmful particles.

Antioxidants—and flavonoids, in particular—are also great tools to help the body purge toxins. According to Australia’s Department of Health, “studies show that flavonoid-rich foods prevent some diseases, including metabolic-related diseases and cancer.”

While taking antioxidant supplements has not been linked to any health benefits, maintaining an antioxidant-rich diet of foods like fruits, vegetables, tea, and, of course, dark chocolate, can help your body perform at its top level.

Most importantly, flavonoids promote blood flow which can directly lead to improved cognitive function: a 2020 study put this to the test and found that “the notion that everyday available portions of dark chocolate can confer benefits to the brain in healthy consumers.”

Best of all, by simply being the delicious treat that it is, dark chocolate has readily been found to boost neural activity by triggering the parts of the brain associated with pleasure.

Now that you know all the great benefits dark chocolate has to offer, which bar will you try next?

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