Published On: January 25th, 2023
Ah, chocolate! Willy Wonka’s favourite confection! It’s a treat that has been around for centuries but has recently surged in popularity. Dark chocolate, in particular, has caught the attention of health-conscious consumers.
However, have you never wondered what exactly dark chocolate is and why is dark chocolate good for you? So grab your Golden Ticket, and let’s take a journey into the world of dark chocolate! This article will explore what it is, what makes it unique, and the benefits you can enjoy if you indulge in this dark treat.
Table of Contents
Dark Chocolate: A Heavenly Delight
Indulging in a sweet treat is one of life’s greatest pleasures, and few things can compare to the deliciousness of dark chocolate. Its fabulous texture and rich aroma make it a delight to savour and enjoy.
What is Dark Chocolate?
We all have had dark chocolate. But have you ever wondered what makes dark chocolate so special?
Dark chocolate dates back to the Mayans from 2000 BC when it was consumed as a bitter fermented beverage with wine or spices. Dark chocolate comes from the seed of the Cacao tree, very nutritious and packed with antioxidants.
Dark chocolate has higher cocoa content( over 50-60% cocoa solids). It is usually bitter or semi-sweet. It is usually darker in colour and contains no milk solids or excess sugar compared to other types of chocolate. Dark chocolate is made from roasted cocoa beans, ground into a paste, and then processed into a solid form. The best quality dark chocolate should have no milk.
Now that we are introduced, let’s dive in to learn about dark chocolate’s health benefits.
Dark Chocolate: Its Many Health Benefits
Besides its unforgettable taste, there are many health benefits of dark chocolates. Dark chocolate is packed with nutrients and has been linked to improved heart and skin health, reduced stress levels, and elevated brain function.
May Improve Heart Health
Dark chocolate is rich in a phytonutrient called flavonoid (2-3 times more than milk chocolate). Flavonoids are compounds linked to improved cardiovascular health. They stimulate the production of Nitric Oxide (NO), which relaxes blood vessels, improves circulation, and reduces the risk of blood pressure.
While dark chocolate contains a range of beneficial compounds, it is essential to remember to consume it in moderation. It is high-calorie, so too consumption will be unhealthy.
Now, let’s look at what dark chocolate can do for your brain.
A Brain Food
Flavonoids in dark chocolate can improve memory and focus. They can improve blood flow to the brain, improving the delivery of oxygen and nutrients. This can help increase mental alertness, concentration, and verbal learning and enhance cognitive performance. A recent study on young adults established the same.
Dark chocolate can produce endorphins, serotonin, anandamide, phenylethylamine, and dopamine in your body, which leads to improved moods and reduced stress. Additionally, dark chocolate is an excellent source of essential fatty acids. Fatty acids are a rich source of Omega 3 fatty acids, a significant building block of the brain. It effectively sharpens memory and uplifts a person’s overall mood.
Next, let’s discuss some of the dark chocolate benefits for the skin.
Improve Skin Health
The benefits of dark chocolate on your skin are many. Let’s find out!
- The flavonols help protect the skin from sun damage and reduce inflammation. In addition, the essential fatty acids are important components of cell membranes, which help keep skin cells healthy and hydrated. They also help reduce inflammation and can even help protect the skin from sun damage.
- Dark chocolate also contains minerals like magnesium, iron, zinc and selenium, which are essential for healthy, glowing skin. Zinc helps reduce inflammation, and selenium protects the skin from oxidative damage.
- Additionally, dark chocolate contains theobromine, a stimulant that boosts circulation, which may help to improve the skin’s appearance by giving it a healthy glow.
Boost the Immunity
Gut bacteria play an essential role in the immune system, as they help to protect against harmful bacteria and viruses while inducing the growth of good microorganisms. Dark chocolate may be a good source of prebiotics, nutrients that help nourish the good bacteria in your gut. Cocoa is also rich in polyphenols, plant-based compounds packed with antioxidants.
Dark chocolate’s natural flavour and dark hue will be an eternal classic. It is undoubtedly more than just a luxurious treat. With its many health benefits, dark chocolate is the ideal snack to indulge in and benefit from too! It is an ideal snack choice for those looking to maintain a healthy lifestyle and diet.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Let’s find out the answers to some frequently asked questions about dark chocolates!
1. Why is dark chocolate more expensive than milk chocolate?
Dark chocolate is more expensive compared to milk chocolate due to the higher quantity of Cacao. And, Cacao is expensive. Dark chocolate also has a very complex flavour profile than milk chocolates. In addition, dark chocolate can be more expensive due to the cost of premium ingredients, higher manufacturing costs, and the labour required to produce it.
2. What is the best type of dark chocolate?
The best type of dark chocolate is the one that you enjoy the most! Some people prefer dark chocolate with a higher cocoa content, while others prefer a sweeter variety. If you are looking for the healthiest dark chocolate, then one that is organic, minimally processed, and made with raw or unrefined sweeteners such as coconut sugar, maple syrup, or honey is the best choice. The cocoa content should be 70% or higher and free of added artificial flavours, preservatives, or emulsifiers.
3. What are the benefits of eating dark chocolate candy for the skin?
Dark chocolate candy is packed with antioxidants, which can protect the skin from environmental damage. The flavonols in dark chocolate can improve skin hydration and reduce inflammation. Dark chocolate can also help improve blood flow to the skin and reduce wrinkles and fine lines.