People automatically associate chocolate with junk food. Most likely because in many circumstances, it really is something you want to avoid. Feeding children chocolate bars for breakfast does not exactly count for a nutritious and well-balanced meal. Nevertheless, there is increasing evidence that chocolate can help humans, and is healthy under specific conditions. Why not examine some of those conditions in which you might ask, “Can eating chocolate really be healthy?”.
For women who continually search for that perfect skin glow, cocoa (cacao) seed extract has been found to maintain natural elasticity and increase blood flow, both of which keep the skin attractive and supple. In fact, for years, advertisements for skin creams and moisturizers have toutedChocolate Shavings the benefits of cocoa seeds. Cocoa butter is the ingredient that protects the skin and keeps it nice looking.
Further, cacao is very high in a compound called “theobromine”. It is known to energize much like caffeine, but does not have the same adverse effects. Be warned, though, that despite the fact that it may help humans, the compound is definitely toxic to cats and dogs, thus, the reason to avoid feeding chocolate to your pets. Additionally, cacao contains “amino acid tryptophan” which encourages relaxation. It also promotes the release of endorphins, the reason some women crave chocolate when they have a migraine or menstrual pains. Of course, chocolate appears to cause migraines in other people, but, the truth is, the varying ingredients in a chocolate bar or piece of chocolate are really the cause.
Another compound in cocoa is “flavonoids”. These are the same substances found in green tea, red wine, and berries, which all are recognized to have medicinal properties. There have been numerous studies to prove the beneficial effects on the heart by ingesting “flavanol antioxidants”. Also, research and chemical analysis demonstrate that natural cocoa has important minerals and dietary fiber, which help with lowering cholesterol levels. Flavonoids are important to humans, as they are natural cleaners. When consumed in the right doses, they affect the system with their anti-inflammatory, anti-viral, and anti-allergic properties. Dark chocolate has much more antioxidants than milk chocolate with some sources saying as much as four times the amount. Plus, it is recommended that if you want to experience the full effects of flavonoids, that you should choose chocolate with a high percentage of cocoa.
Finally, a word of caution when buying chocolate with the express purpose of benefiting from healthy eating. The truth is that many of these “chocolate cures”, weight loss gimmicks, and other snake oil type products are just preying on your need to be healthy while eating something supposedly forbidden. They extol the virtues of chocolate as the next dietary miracle, but the truth is they do not disclose the real contents of their ingredients. For the most part, you are not receiving any of the benefits of the real cocoa. In fact, these companies are not even required to disclose the amount of alkalization of the cocoa powder. This means that there is probably no benefit derived from their ingredients. One thing that you can do when choosing products is, look for ingredients that include “natural cocoa” and not those “processed with alkali”