Dark chocolate is made from cocoa butter, lots of people are aware that it is very nutritious, most people see it as fat, cholesterol and bad for the health but on the contrary, dark chocolate is actually rich in minerals, vitamins, carbohydrate, protein as well as antioxidants that can improve your health, prevents illness and therefore makes you live longer and healthier. Some of the health benefits of eating dark chocolate include
1. Brain Power Improvement: Dark chocolate contains high amounts of cocoa; cocoa is rich in caffeine and Theobromine which stimulates the central nervous system. It also contains Flavanol and flavonoid, flavanol increase blood flow to the brain while flavonoids can improve cognitive function.
2. Contains Antioxidants: Dark chocolate contains antioxidants such as polyphenols, flavanols, catechins and lots more. Antioxidants help fight free radicals and reduce oxidative stress, Oxidative stress can cause disruption in normal mechanisms of cellular signaling which is primarily the leading cause of diseases such as cancer, myocardial infraction, heart failure, atherosclerosis, and lots more.
3. Rich in Nutrients: 100g (3.5ounce) of dark chocolate contains the following amounts of nutrients:
*Minerals: 58% of magnesium, 67% of iron, 98% of manganese, 89% of copper, phosphorous 44%, zinc 35% and 1% of sodium.
*Vitamins: Vitamin K 70%, Vitamin E 40%, Vitamin B6 29%, Vitamin B3 (Niacin) 3%, Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin) 70% and Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) 30%
4. Reducing Bad cholesterol: LDL also known as bad cholesterol can be reduced by cocoa; cocoa butter contains as much monounsaturated fat as olive oil. Dark chocolate can reduce LDL also known as bad cholesterol as well as increase HDL the good cholesterol.
5. Reducing Cardiovascular Diseases: Flavanols presents in Dark chocolate can help lower blood pressure and can also improve blood flow to the heart and brain. According to a Swedish study in 2011, eating dark chocolate can reduce stroke. Flavonoids in dark chocolate protects the skin from UV damage (sun light)
Please note that 100g of dark chocolate also contains about 600 calories and some amounts of sugar, so it should be consumed moderately to prevent increase in cholesterol and sugar levels.