Chocolate Without Guilt

May be because chocolate is so very tasty, it can make you feel guilty when you indulge in it. Chocolate is so sinfully delicious that everyone seems to be giving it negative attributes. There has been much research going on about this aspect of chocolates recently. According to claims, chocolate is actually more healthy than harmful. Is this just wishful thinking or is it supported by some research? Lets analyze it.

Acts as an Antioxidant:

Chocolate is essentially plant food, derived from the cocoa bean, it contains plant chemicals including antioxidants. Cocoa is good in flavonoids called flavanols. Many studies show that people who consume food with more flavonoids have a lowered risk of Heart Disease, Prostrate Cancer, Asthma, Lung Cancer and Diabetes.

The fat that is present in chocolate has little affect on blood cholesterol. Even though that fat is highly saturated, it is mostly stearic acid that does not boost cholesterol. Dark chocolate contains more flavonoids than any other kind.

Keeps Blood Platelets from Clumping:

According to researchers when dark or bitter chocolates were put in a test tube then the chocolate reduced blood clotting. It stabilizes arterial plaque which makes it difficult to travel and in the process cause a heart attack. Its effect is almost to the same extent as Aspirin.

Lowers Blood Pressure

Dark chocolate can also lower blood pressure. Research was conducted on a group of people who ate dark chocolate everyday for two weeks. At the end of this time period, their blood pressure was lessened by around 5.1 points.

Increases Blood Vessel Flexibility

Researchers from Harvard university and women’s hospital published a study on the effects of drinking four cups of cocoa drink everyday. The result was that they felt more relaxed, it opened up the blood vessels, and thus made them more resistant to the fatty deposits and inflammation that may lead to heart attacks and other vascular diseases.

Amount Consumed also Matters

Just because we say chocolate is good for health, doesn’t mean that you can eat loads of it. The chocolates we generally consume have lots of calories and fat. A small bar of chocolate of around 30 gms has 140 or 150 calories and 8 to 10 grams of fat. Eat small amounts of dark chocolate to satisfy your cravings and this also helps you stick to a healthier eating plan.