Have you ever heard about cocoa and dark chocolate benefits? This article shows some of them that are supported by science, so they are great for everyone.
Cocoa and dark chocolate have a wide variety of powerful antioxidants.
Dark chocolate with at least 70 % cocoa is a good source of beneficial minerals.
Quality dark chocolate is rich in fiber, iron, magnesium, copper, manganese and a few other minerals. To mention an example, magnesium in cocoa products helps prevent ill effects of a deficiency.
Because of its antioxidant properties, cocoa offers neuron protection and enhances cognition and a positive mood.
In addition, cocoa also works as a natural anti-depressant as its flavanols help in improving mood and combating depression.
Brain function & blood pressure
Cocoa has also been found to be beneficial for the mental health of human beings. It may improve brain function by increasing blood flow.
Cocoa is rich in agents that enhance the production of various feel-good chemicals in the brain, notably serotonin and dopamine.
Studies show that the flavanols from cocoa can improve blood flow to the skin and protect it from sun damage.
The bioactive compounds in cocoa may improve blood flow in the arteries and cause a small but statistically significant decrease in blood pressure.
The addition of cocoa to your diet may help achieve faster weight loss.
Cocoa helps in weight loss by improving mitochondrial biogenesis. It increases muscle glucose uptake by inserting glucose transporter 4 in the skeletal muscle membrane.
The polyphenols present in cocoa seem to trigger muscle metabolism, simulating the effects of regular exercise to cause fat burning and build lean muscle mass.
Cocoa and dark chocolate may reduce your risk of diabetes and maintain healthy blood sugar levels.
Research has shown that cocoa has therapeutic potential in enhancing the vascular function of diabetics on various medications along with improving endothelial function and counteracting blood vessel dysfunction caused by diabetes.
Above all, it is important to remember that beside the dark chocolate benefits, it still contains significant amounts of sugar and fat, so it should be consumed in reasonable portions and combined with a healthy and balanced diet. The darker the chocolate, the less sugar it will contain.