Chocolate. Mmmm, chocolate! I know there are some (odd) people who aren’t too keen, but almost everyone I know enjoys a little indulgence once in a while. Or a large indulgence – often. (Maybe that’s just me?!) If you’re like me, you’ll probably feel guilty after scoffing a bar of Galaxy or the entire share bag of Maltesers (again, just me?!), but there are loads of reasons as to why chocolate isn’t as bad as it’s made out to be. Here are 5 reasons eating chocolate is good for you!
It contains more antioxidants than apples: Dark chocolate in particular contains more antioxidants gram for gram than apples. Antioxidants help to counteract cell damage that leads to visible signs of aging and risk of developing certain chronic and debilitating diseases, including Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.
It’s good for your heart: Dark chocolate can actually help keep your arteries flexible (who knew that was a thing?!) by stopping white blood cells from sticking to the walls.
It’s full of minerals: Dark chocolate contains plenty of good minerals, such as potassium, zinc and selenium, and a good proportion of the daily recommended amount of iron.
It can help you lose weight: Melting a small square of chocolate on the tongue around 20 minutes before eating can send a signal to your brain to tell you that you feel full, meaning your likely to eat as much at your meal. I have also found that indulging in a treat-sized chocolate bar each day keeps my cravings at bay, meaning I’m not as likely to binge and fall off the wagon when dieting!
It can help lower stress levels: Research found that levels of cortisol (the stress hormone) in the brain were lowered when chocolate was consumed. Chocolate contains several bioactive compounds that increase levels of anandamide, a lipid that turns on the brain receptors responsible for calming you down, according to a study published in the mid-’90s.
These are just 5 reasons eating chocolate is good for you, but there are many more. So, as long as it’s the dark stuff more often than milk, go for it! With Easter just around the corner, you have permission to indulge without feeling guilty – not much, anyway!
If you want some yummy chocolatey recipes, you could try these amazing Nutella treats!