Is there a dark secret to dark chocolate? The health benefits of dark chocolate is in the news. Here is what some people are saying. Dark Chocolate contains Flavonoids. Flavonoids are pigments found in plants that act as antioxidants to help reduce damage to your body. Antioxidants neutralize free radicals, which damage cells, clog arteries and contribute to chronic illness and aging. Antioxidants are found in dark chocolate.
Free radicals are cells that have lost an electron, thus are unstable cells. These free radicals basically steal electrons from other cells in an effort to heal themselves, ultimately creating new free radicals in the process. By stealing electrons, it can cause damage to DNA, leading to the possible development of cancer. Antioxidants search for these free radicals and lend them an electron. This stabilizes the molecule, thus preventing damage to other cells. Antioxidants also turn free radicals into waste by products, and they eventually get eliminated from the body. They also have the ability to repair previous damage to cells.
Chocolate is made from plants, which means it contains many of the health benefits of dark vegetables. Dark chocolate contains a large number of antioxidants (nearly 8 times the number found in strawberries). Flavonoids also help relax blood pressure through the production of nitric oxide, and balance certain hormones in the body.
Dark chocolate is good for your heart. A small amount of it everyday can help keep your heart and cardiovascular system running well. Two heart health benefits of dark chocolate are:
Lower Blood Pressure: Studies have shown that consuming a small amount of dark chocolate everyday can reduce blood pressure in individuals with high blood pressure.
Lower Cholesterol: Dark chocolate has also been shown to reduce LDL cholesterol (the bad cholesterol) by up to 10 percent.
Other Benefits of Dark Chocolate:
Chocolate also holds benefits apart from protecting your heart:
it tastes good
it stimulates endorphin production, which gives a feeling of pleasure
it contains serotonin, which acts as an anti-depressant
it contains theobromine, caffeine and other substances which are stimulants
Doesn't Chocolate Have a lot of Fat?:
Here is some more good news -- some of the fats in chocolate do not impact your cholesterol. The fats in chocolate are 1/3 oleic acid, 1/3 stearic acid and 1/3 palmitic acid:
Oleic Acid is a healthy monounsaturated fat that is also found in olive oil.
Stearic Acid is a saturated fat but one which research is shows has a neutral effect on cholesterol.
Palmitic Acid is also a saturated fat, one which raises cholesterol and heart disease risk.
That means only 1/3 of the fat in dark chocolate is bad for you.
So does dark chocolate have a dark secret? You decide. As with all things you eat, it is always wise to do so in moderation.
Andrew Sinay is the owner of A. Andrews & Sons Marketing Group. His opinion has been well respected by Business Owners and Internet Marketers from around the world. You can learn more about A. Andrews & Sons Marketing Group by going to http://www.aandrewsandsons.com or calling him at 951-805-8585. Further information about the benefits of dark chocolate can be found at http://www.showsigh.com
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Andrew_Sinay