Chocolate is one of the most delicious and popular plant-based foods around the world. Not everyone knows this, but chocolate also provides several health benefits. Chocolate is a good source of fiber, manganese, copper, iron, magnesium, etc. You will get 11 grams of fiber from a 100-gram chocolate bar.
Let’s take a look at some of the major reasons for adding chocolate to your plant-based meal.
Contains Powerful Antioxidants
According to some of the recent studies, raw, unprocessed cocoa beans contain numerous powerful antioxidants. Many of the organic compounds that are present in chocolate are biologically active and can act as antioxidants. Some of the powerful antioxidants present in this plant-based food are catechins, flavonoids, polyphenols, etc.
Lower LDL Cholesterol Levels
One of the main benefits of eating chocolate is that it helps in reducing the risk of heart disease by lowering the LDL cholesterol levels and increasing the HDL cholesterol levels. One recent study showed that consuming cocoa powder can decrease oxidized LDL cholesterol levels in men. It was also found that cocoa powder can increase the level of HDL cholesterol. Eating dark chocolate can also help in reducing insulin resistance, which is one of the major risk factors of heart disease.
Lower Your Blood Pressure
According to some of the recent studies, flavonoids that are present in chocolate can help in producing nitric oxide by stimulating the endothelium, the lining of arteries. It is the nitric oxide that sends signals to the arteries to relax, which eventually helps in lowering the blood pressure. Some controlled studies also showed that eating dark chocolate can help in improving your blood flow.
Protect Your Skin From Sun
Chocolate contains certain bioactive compounds that are very beneficial for protecting your skin from the sun. The flavonoids present in chocolate can help in preventing sun damage. This bioactive compound also helps in increasing your skin density and hydration. It helps in improving the blood flow to the skin and keeps your skin healthy.
Reduces The Risk Of Heart Disease
We have already discussed that eating chocolate can help in reducing LDL cholesterol levels, insulin resistance, and lower your blood pressure. All these are major risk factors for heart disease. That means eating dark chocolate daily can help in reducing the risk of developing heart disease significantly.
Improves Brain Function
Studies have shown that eating dark chocolate can also benefit your brain. According to one recent study, eating chocolate that has high amounts of flavonoids can increase the blood flow to the brain. it was also found that eating cocoa beans can help in improving cognitive function.
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