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Health benefits of chocolates. Cocoa is good for heart and brain

BY: Swati | Category: Food and Drinks | Post Date: 2008-10-05
 



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There are billions of chocolate lovers in this world, infact the word "chocoholic" refers excessive desire to eat them. Unlike smoking, there is no addiction caused by eating chocolates, it is simply a craving which can be left anytime. Pure chocolate is made from plants (cacao trees) and has no cholesterol and almost no saturated fat. To give a sweet taste to chocolates and added flavours, most chocolates we see have sugar and milk products added on the top, which does contain cholesterol. Chocolates (particularly the dark one) is rich in antioxidants, which helps the body from aging caused by free radicals. Therefore antioxidants can reduce the damage that leads to heart disease. Chocolates contain "Flavonoids" which help to control blood pressure and balancing of certain hormones too. Dark chocolate has 65 percent or higher cocoa content. Those who drank cocoa with more flavonols showed more nitric oxide activity which helps to maintain a healthy blood pressure and, in turn, cardiovascular health. Cocoa has nearly twice the antioxidants of red wine and up to three times those found in green tea.

A practical example:
The Kuna people of panama in the San Blas islands have a very low percentage of heart diseases than rest of the country. The Kuna people drink and eat good proportions of cocoa which helps them to maintain healthy blood vessels. This in turn helps to have a healthy heart and a lower risk of kidney disease, high blood pressure, type two diabetes and a few other conditions.

Eat Dark chocolate - Words of caution
To get the true health benefits of chocolates, try to get dark chocolate with reduced sugar. Additionally, limit yourself to a small bar. As mentioned earlier, excessive sugar, caramel, nougat and other dairy products actually tend to reduce the true benefits of chocolates. Many CFS (chronic fatigue syndrome) specialists consider that their patients should stay away from it completely. Chocolate may also trigger headaches in migraine sufferers. You will need to do a little research if you have any health concerns about eating chocolate.

Unfortunately, the chocolate industry processing removes a lot of nutrients from cocoa including the flavanol because of the naturally bitter taste. Therefore, if you are relying on chocolate bars, do not regard it as health food, but rather as an occasional treat with slight benefits only. It is very important to consult your doctor before taking chocolate as a treat for your health.

Health benefits of chocolates

1. Chocolate is good for heart:
Yes, since chocolate is rich in antioxidants, it is good for heart. It helps to reduce the bad LDL cholesterol as much as 10%.

2. Chocolates can help you control blood pressure:
Due to the presence of Flavonoids it partly helps to reduce high blood pressure.

3. Chocolate is good for brain - it helps to enhance our mood:
Not only does it taste good, it also has serotonin which is a an anti-depressant, it also has caffeine which is a stimulant and stimulates endorphin which gives us a feeling of happiness.

Other benefits include:
* Drinking a cup of hot chocolate before meals may actually diminish appetite.
* The carbohydrates in chocolate raise serotonin levels in the brain, resulting in a sense of well-being.
* Are thought to help reduce platelet activation.
* Chocolate contains vitamins A, B1, C, D and E as well as potassium, sodium, iron and fluorine.
* Special extra-flavonoid-enriched cocoa can help a moister and smoother skin.
* In a survey published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine, those who ate chocolate every day seemed to have more s*x drive, better lubrication, and an easier time reaching orgasm.

Article Source: http://www.saching.com



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