The sentinel

Health Benefits of dark chocolate

Jan 31, 2023
Very Nutritious
If you buy quality dark chocolate with a high cocoa content, then it’s quite nutritious. It contains a decent amount of soluble fiber and is loaded with minerals.
Powerful source of antioxidants
Dark chocolate is loaded with organic compounds that are biologically active and function as antioxidants. These include polyphenols, flavanols and catechins, among others. According to research, the polyphenols in dark chocolate may help lower some forms of LDL (“bad”) cholesterol when combined with other foods like almonds and cocoa
May improve blood flow and lower blood pressure
The flavanoids in dark chocolate can stimulate the endothelium, the lining of arteries, to produce nitric oxide (NO) (5). One of the functions of NO is to send signals to the arteries to relax, which lowers the resistance to blood flow and therefore reduces blood pressure.
Raises HDL and protects LDL from oxidation
Consuming dark chocolate can improve several important risk factors for heart disease. It may protect against high cholesterol. In a small study, eating dark chocolate supplemented with the flavanol lycopene was found to significantly decrease levels of total cholesterol, LDL (“bad”) cholesterol, and triglycerides
May reduce heart disease risk
The compounds in dark chocolate appear to be highly protective against the oxidation of LDL. In the long term, this should cause much less cholesterol to lodge in the arteries, resulting in a lower risk of heart disease. In fact, research show a fairly drastic improvement.
May protect your skin from the sun
The bioactive compounds in dark chocolate may also be great for your skin.The flavanols can protect against sun damage, improve blood flow to the skin, and increase skin density and hydration (16). The minimal erythemal dose (MED) is the minimum amount of UVB rays required to cause redness in the skin 24 hours after exposure.
Could improve brain function
The good news isn’t over yet. Dark chocolate may also improve the function of your brain. Studies show that eating high flavanol cocoa can improve blood flow to the brain in young adults. This may explain why eating cocoa daily appears to improve attention, verbal learning, and memory