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The Abundant Health Benefits of Chocolate

Updated on July 23, 2015

Not Junk Food

In the world of chocolate, there's the good stuff and the not so good stuff. When it comes to obtaining the amazing health benefits this food contains, going with the greatest cocoa content is going to be the key. Chocolate has been a favorite among the worlds people dating back to the Aztecs. Modern science is showing impressive results with the many beneficial qualities chocolate contains. Continue reading to learn more about this often misunderstood food and how it may actually provide a host of rewards for your health and well being.

Aim for High Cocoa Content

The more cocoa content in chocolate there is, means more health boosting antioxidants.
The more cocoa content in chocolate there is, means more health boosting antioxidants. | Source

Origins of Hot Cocoa

Hot cocoa originally came from the Aztec people of Mexico. During their time, only the highest ranked were allowed to consume the drink. It started off as a much different beverage than we have today. They would use real cocoa beans which they would grind up with chili peppers and vanilla. When the drink became sweeter is when the Spanish added sugar and milk. They also used spices including cinnamon.

Nutrition

Cocoa itself is a nutrient rich food source. It features a wide array of vitamins and minerals including magnesium, iron, zinc, copper, potassium, and B vitamins. It is also low in fat. Cocoa is an incredible resource of mood enhancing benefits as well. Eating milk chocolate is delicious but if you want to get these benefits while still having great taste, reach for a dark chocolate bar instead.

Loaded With Antioxidants

The biggest draw to chocolate in terms of its health benefits is its abundance in flavanols. They are a type of flavonoid which can only be found in cocoa products. Cocoa actually stands among the richest sources of antioxidants found in nature. Getting as much antioxidants as we can into our diets helps keep our bodies working at optimum efficiency. They also help to ward off the aging process and protect your cells from free radical damage. Eating a high cocoa content product is a great way to incorporate anti-aging into your diet, but remember that moderation is crucial, especially when it comes to chocolate.

Great For A Healthy Snack

Chocolate In moderation can supercharge your health.
Chocolate In moderation can supercharge your health. | Source

Heart Healthy

Another quality of life enhancing benefit chocolate can provide is its scientific results of protecting heart health. Studies have shown that the flavanols can improve vascular health, lower blood pressure, and even increase blood flow to the heart and brain. A great way to have chocolate is to purchase a dark chocolate bar and have a square or two a day. The bar will last for days if you do this and you will be getting cocoas benefits in a healthy and moderated way.

Natural Mood Support

Besides having its distinct and delicate taste, chocolate has many nutrients which benefit our bodies as well as our minds. Eating chocolate can stimulate the production of endorphins, which will give you a feeling of pleasure. It also features serotonin which can be utilized as a natural antidepressant. Chocolate can be a good outlet for the blues or if you just need a little getaway from the stresses of life. The darker and richer the cocoa content the more these benefits will be accessible to you.

To Your Health

So enjoy the fact that chocolate has great benefits for our health but be wise and develop a taste for the dark stuff. I personally developed a tolerance for the 90% content bars by simply trying and finishing them. A bar with this high of a content may not be for everyday but you can still get many benefits from bars with 60% or more. Even milk chocolate still has benefits but it does not to compare to dark chocolate. If you enjoyed reading through this article, be sure to visit my profile or the links below to learn more about other foods.

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  • vespawoolf profile image

    vespawoolf 5 years ago from Peru, South America

    This is right down my alley...I have a square or two of dark chocolate a day just as suggested. Another great hub, Olde cashmere!

  • Olde Cashmere profile image
    Author

    Olde Cashmere 5 years ago from Michigan, United States

    That's so cool, I used to switched it up with a different brand every week for the variety. Thank you vespawoolf (:

  • connieow profile image

    Connie S Owens 5 years ago from El Cajon, CA

    I am a sworn choco-holic. I love chocolate and use to be stuck on milk chocolate. But since I stopped using sugar in everything, I now prefer dark chocolate. Which is the healthiest form of chocolate.

    However, not all chocolate is equal. There are some that are the mostest favest ones. :)

    Voted up and awesome.

  • profile image

    Roohi Khan 5 years ago from India

    Ok, I love chocolate but will definitely will make sure that it is dark chocolate from now on. Great topic and hub!

  • Olde Cashmere profile image
    Author

    Olde Cashmere 5 years ago from Michigan, United States

    Thank you Roohi for reading and for your comments (:

  • Olde Cashmere profile image
    Author

    Olde Cashmere 5 years ago from Michigan, United States

    I am also a choco-holic connieow (: and I also used to be head over heels for the milk chocolate. Thank you for reading and your thoughtful actions.

  • connieow profile image

    Connie S Owens 5 years ago from El Cajon, CA

    Olde Cashmere, Costco has dark chocolate truffles around Christmas time. They last me a long time. Cuz u only get them once a year. Delicious. Especially with crunchy p-nt bttr.

  • Olde Cashmere profile image
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    Olde Cashmere 5 years ago from Michigan, United States

    Thank you connieow for telling me that, that sounds like it'd be awesome. I like the idea of it lasting a long time as well. I appreciate you giving me that tip and I'll be sure to get some when they are available (:

  • unknown spy profile image

    IAmForbidden 4 years ago from Neverland - where children never grow up.

    i'm so inlove with chocolates! Excellent hub James!

  • vnsatakopan profile image

    Dr.Vangeepuram Navaneetham Satakopan 4 years ago from Chennai, India

    Great writing. Agree that moderation is needed in everything. Interesting information on the benefits of chocolates.

  • christin53 profile image

    Ann-Christin 4 years ago from UK

    Great hub. I adore chocolate especially the dark stuff and always have a little bit everyday. Its good to know there are health benefits too :)

  • Olde Cashmere profile image
    Author

    Olde Cashmere 4 years ago from Michigan, United States

    Thank you unknown spy, I might do a historical hub on the uses of chocolates one of these days. Thanks for reading :)

  • Olde Cashmere profile image
    Author

    Olde Cashmere 4 years ago from Michigan, United States

    Thank you vnsatakopan for reading and commenting. Chocolate may very well be one of the best foods we have at our disposal :)

  • Olde Cashmere profile image
    Author

    Olde Cashmere 4 years ago from Michigan, United States

    Thank you so much christin53, I always have a square or two of the good stuff and I know it's excellent for my health. Thank you for stopping by :)

  • Rosalinem profile image

    Rosalinem 4 years ago from Nairobi, Kenya

    Great hub and its good to know that the dark chocolate is better than the other varieties. Voted up and interesting.

  • Olde Cashmere profile image
    Author

    Olde Cashmere 4 years ago from Michigan, United States

    I appreciate you reading and commenting on my hub Rosalinem. Thank you very much :)

  • rahul0324 profile image

    Jessee R 4 years ago from Gurgaon, India

    James now I will eat more chocolate.... hehe,... great hub my friend!

    I think you will like my friend Rajan Sir's work here in chocolates

    https://hubpages.com/health/All-About-Chocolates-A...

  • Olde Cashmere profile image
    Author

    Olde Cashmere 4 years ago from Michigan, United States

    Thank you Rahul, easily of one of my favorite foods as well as for most people. I'll be sure to check that out, thanks :)

  • profile image

    wwolfs 4 years ago

    Another great hub. It's nice to know there are health benefits eating chocolate and it's loaded with antioxidants.

    Voted up and useful!

  • Olde Cashmere profile image
    Author

    Olde Cashmere 4 years ago from Michigan, United States

    I appreciate you voting up and rating wwolfs. Thank you for reading and I'm glad you found this hub useful :)

  • jainismus profile image

    Mahaveer Sanglikar 4 years ago from Pune, India

    Great Hub with interesting information, thank you for sharing it.

  • RTalloni profile image

    RTalloni 4 years ago from the short journey

    "Yes" simply does not do your poll question justice. ;) Something like "Are you kidding, of course, who wouldn't love it…." might fit better. :)

    Seriously, it's always good to read about the benefits of chocolate. I'm out of my squares right now and need to restock my 2-a-day supply. There's always cocoa for my coffee in the meantime!

  • Olde Cashmere profile image
    Author

    Olde Cashmere 4 years ago from Michigan, United States

    Thank you for reading and for your comments jainismus :)

  • Olde Cashmere profile image
    Author

    Olde Cashmere 4 years ago from Michigan, United States

    That sounds like a much better option RTalloni. Thank you for reading this hub, I appreciate your comments :)

  • howlermunkey profile image

    Jeff Boettner 4 years ago from Tampa, FL

    Great Hub, Now my late night cravings are justied. Sharing.

  • Olde Cashmere profile image
    Author

    Olde Cashmere 4 years ago from Michigan, United States

    Thank you howlermunkey, glad this hub did that for you :) Appreciate you sharing.

  • CCahill profile image

    CCahill 4 years ago from England

    Think everyone is just looking for a reason to justify their chocolate addiction ha

  • Olde Cashmere profile image
    Author

    Olde Cashmere 4 years ago from Michigan, United States

    Key is high cocoa content and staying away from the junk food bars near the register. Thanks for reading CCahill :)

  • rajan jolly profile image

    Rajan Singh Jolly 4 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

    Olde Cashmere, this is an excellently written hub. I'm a chocoholic and love dark chocolate.

    Voted this up, useful and interesting and shared.

  • bac2basics profile image

    Anne 4 years ago from Spain

    When it comes to chocolate I don´t need any persuasion to eat it...quite the opposite in fact. The only thing that would stop me consuming on a regular basis is death !!!! love it...great hub too

  • rebeccamealey profile image

    Rebecca Mealey 4 years ago from Northeastern Georgia, USA

    I always love hearing the good things about chocolate. thanks for the reminder that it is dark chocolate that we need, and only a little each day. I have some semi sweet chips I've been eating.

  • Olde Cashmere profile image
    Author

    Olde Cashmere 4 years ago from Michigan, United States

    Thank you rajan jolly for dropping by and checking this out. Appreciate the voting and sharing and for your kind words :)

  • Olde Cashmere profile image
    Author

    Olde Cashmere 4 years ago from Michigan, United States

    Thanks bac2basics for treading this, great comments :)

  • Olde Cashmere profile image
    Author

    Olde Cashmere 4 years ago from Michigan, United States

    Appreciate you reading rebeccamealey. Thank you for your kindness :)

  • mmsu profile image

    mmsu 4 years ago from Pakistan

    Just looking at the first picture was enough!!=p..what a sight:)

    Good informative hub!!The fact that choclate has health is benefit just complements everything=D

  • Olde Cashmere profile image
    Author

    Olde Cashmere 4 years ago from Michigan, United States

    Thank you for reading and leaving your comments mmsu :)

  • mmsu profile image

    mmsu 4 years ago from Pakistan

    Anything on choclate is worth it!!

  • Ruby H Rose profile image

    Maree Michael Martin 4 years ago from Northwest Washington on an Island

    I love it that dark chocolate is so good for us. Thanks for such an informative hub about it. Sweetness!

  • Olde Cashmere profile image
    Author

    Olde Cashmere 4 years ago from Michigan, United States

    Thank you for reading and for commenting Ruby H Rose :)

  • Rosemay50 profile image

    Rosemary Sadler 4 years ago from Hawkes Bay - NewZealand

    Oh boy!!! this is the best hub I've read this year. Lol

    You just reminded me that I have a big bar of dark chocolate with hazelnuts put away. Off now to guzzle my way through those health benefits... well maybe 4 pieces. Lol

    Thank you for a well researched and informative hub on a favourite topic :))

    Thumbs up from me

  • Olde Cashmere profile image
    Author

    Olde Cashmere 4 years ago from Michigan, United States

    Thank you and happy you enjoyed this hub Rosemay, it's among my favorite topics as well :)

  • youbar profile image

    Joel Lipman 4 years ago from Los Angeles, California

    I never get tired of chocolate. Everyone loves chocolate. It might be the most popular food item in the world really. Nice hub, good work.

  • Olde Cashmere profile image
    Author

    Olde Cashmere 4 years ago from Michigan, United States

    I agree fully youbar, appreciate your comments and for reading :)

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