The higher the percentage of cocoa, the richer the taste. Cocoa is naturally bitter and very strong-tasting. White chocolate is even worse than milk chocolate. I only recommend eating small amounts of minimally processed dark chocolate with at least a 70 percent cocoa content or higher. This type of chocolate is a healthy chocolate that contains the most powerful antioxidants and the least amount of sugar, providing the most benefits of dark chocolate you can get.
Dark chocolate is made from cacao beans, which are actually not beans at all. Benefits of dark chocolate abound thanks to all this goodness. Just an ounce of dark chocolate with 70 percent to 85 percent cacao solids contains around: This type of chocolate contains the most powerful antioxidants and the least amount of sugar. Thankfully, there are a lot of chocolate brands today that offer options that fits this 70 percentage minimum suggestion. The higher the percentage, the greater the potential health benefits of dark chocolate.
Those unhealthy ingredients can mitigate the benefits of dark chocolate. Cocoa can be minimally processed, but if you want raw or the least processed option, you definitely want cacao to be the main ingredient in your dark chocolate. Also look out for any hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated oils in the ingredient list.
Now that huge commercial chocolate makers are responding to the love of dark chocolate and making their own versions, you have to be careful. Now, are you ready for some of the most delicious as well as healthy dark chocolate recipes? You can get all the benefits of dark chocolate without any of the guilt. This is when the the Aztec civilization believed that cacao seeds were a gift of Quetzalcoatl, the god of wisdom. It was in that a British chocolate company J. The love of chocolate has only continued to grow over the years. As science shows more and more benefits of dark chocolate, its popularity will only continue to grow.
According to Mayo Clinic, chocolate can also cause: This is a long list, but all of these possible side effects can typically be avoided by not overindulging in dark chocolate. Women who are pregnant, breastfeeding or trying to become pregnant should also make sure not to have large amounts of chocolate. In moderation, dark chocolate is considered safe for pregnant women. According to the FDA, chocolates are unfortunately one of the most common sources of undeclared milk linked to consumer reactions.
Many manufacturers make their dark chocolate on the same equipment that they use for milk chocolate production so traces of milk end up in the dark chocolate too. Another possible allergen to watch out for in dark chocolate even organic brands is soy lecithin , which is commonly added as an emulsifying agent. Soy lecithin does contain trace amounts of soy proteins, and these have been found to include soy allergens. Some people look to avoid soy lecithin not for allergic reasons, but because of their desire to avoid genetically modified soy.
Benefits of Dark Chocolate You Won't Believe - Dr. Axe
The flavor is so rich that you can enjoy it and get the benefits of dark chocolate with just a little piece. So is dark chocolate good for you? Most certainly yes, as long as you choose the right product. When you choose the best and healthiest option, there are so many awesome benefits of dark chocolate. From the sound of it, you might think leaky gut only affects the digestive system, but in reality it can affect more. Click here to learn more about the webinar. Josh Axe is on a mission to provide you and your family with the highest quality nutrition tips and healthy recipes in the world Axe on Facebook Dr.
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Axe on Instagram Dr. Axe on Google Plus Dr. Axe on Youtube Dr. However, chocolate can have a high calorie count due to its sugar and fat content. Anyone who is trying to slim down or maintain their weight should limit their chocolate consumption and check the label of their favorite product.
The high sugar content of most chocolate can also be a cause of tooth decay. Some people may experience an increase in migraines when eating chocolate regularly due to cocoa's tyramine, histamine, and phenylalanine content. However, research is mixed. There is some evidence that chocolate might cause poor bone structure and osteoporosis. The results of one study, published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition , found that older women who consumed chocolate every day had lower bone density and strength.
Some cocoa powders, chocolate bars, and cacao nibs may contain high levels of cadmium and lead, which are toxic to the kidneys, bones, and other body tissues. In , Consumer Lab tested 43 chocolate products and found that nearly all cocoa powders contained more than 0. All in all, eating chocolate can have both health benefits and risks. As ever, moderation is key. We often hear now that chocolate is actually good for us. Do you think people should eat chocolate for its health benefits?
Considering that heart disease is the number one killer and that dark chocolate has been shown to substantially reduce risk of cardiovascular disease, I believe regular chocolate consumption can be a good thing. Always choose above percent cacao and select your brand wisely so as to keep your cadmium, lead, and sugar low while maximizing the antioxidant and flavonol benefits. We picked linked items based on the quality of products, and list the pros and cons of each to help you determine which will work best for you. We partner with some of the companies that sell these products, which means Healthline UK and our partners may receive a portion of revenues if you make a purchase using a link s above.
Article last updated by Yvette Brazier on Tue 17 July All references are available in the References tab.
Daily consumption of a dark chocolate containing flavanols and added sterol esters affects cardiovascular risk factors in a normotensive population with elevated cholesterol. Basic report, , Candies, Special dark chocolate bar. Chocolate consumption and cardiometabolic disorders: Can chocolate lower your risk of stroke? Chocolate intake is associated with better cognitive function: Association between chocolate consumption and fatness in European adolescents. Chocolate consumption and bone density in older women.
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American Journal of Nutrition. Habitual chocolate consumption and risk of cardiovascular disease among healthy men and women [Abstract]. The Netherlands Journal of Medicine. New tests reveal whether dark chocolates and cocoas are toxic or healthful [Press release]. Dark chocolate supplementation reduces the oxygen cost of moderate intensity cycling. Neurovascular coupling, cerebral white matter integrity, and response to cocoa in older people.
Ancient chocolate found in Maya "teapot. MNT is the registered trade mark of Healthline Media. Any medical information published on this website is not intended as a substitute for informed medical advice and you should not take any action before consulting with a healthcare professional. Privacy Terms Ad policy Careers. This page was printed from: Get the most out of Medical News Today. Subscribe to our Newsletter to recieve: Professionally-verified articles Daily or weekly updates Content custom-tailored to your needs Create an account.
Register for a free account Sign up for a free Medical News Today account to customize your medical and health news experiences. Register take the tour. Table of contents Benefits Light vs. Fast facts on chocolate Here are some key points about chocolate. More detail is in the main article.
8 Awesome Health Benefits of Dark Chocolate
Chocolate consumption has long been associated with conditions such as diabetes , coronary heart disease , and hypertension. Chocolate is believed to contain high levels of antioxidants. Some studies have suggested chocolate could lower cholesterol levels and prevent memory decline. Chocolate contains a large number of calories. People who are seeking to lose or maintain weight should eat chocolate only in moderation. Chocolate might not be all bad. Chocolate may help athletes cover more distance while using less oxygen. Chocolate that is high in sugar can lead to tooth decay and weight gain.
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