Chocolate is typically considered an unhealthy food by some, but the truth of the matter is that real chocolate (not processed candy junk, but high quality and organic) actually possesses a large number of serious health benefits. New research confirms that staying slim is one such positive characteristic. To the delight of chocolate lovers, the study found that those who eat chocolate regularly tend to be thinner than those who do not.
Chocolate has also been tied to improved heart health and a decreased risk of developing cardiovascular disease. Not one, but numerous epidemiologic investigations have actually drawn this conclusion due to the health-promoting flavonoids present in cacao. One such such study, published in the April, 2008 Journal of Nutrition, even found that the consumption of chocolate reduced systolic blood pressure after 8 weeks, and reduced bad cholesterol by 5.3%. But the health benefits of chocolate don’t stop there.
In the study examining the fat-burning effects of chocolate consumption, researchers report that those who ate chocolate a few times per week were slimmer than those who ate it occasionally. They also stated that the benefits seem to come from the frequency of chocolate consumption, not the amount. Despite boosting calorie intake due to a large caloric content, a decrease in BMI was observed. This, of course, is due to the fact that it is the source of the calories that matters — not just the number of calories consumed.
The lead author of the study, Dr. Beatrice Golomb, explains:
“Our findings appear to add to a body of information suggesting that the composition of calories, not just the number of them, matters for determining their ultimate impact on weight,” said the University of California at San Diego researcher.
Chocolate is also full of vital nutrients, such as vitamins A, B1, B2, D, and E. It is highly preferable that the chocolate is organic and contains at least 70% cacao content. The higher percentage of cacao, the better the chocolate will be for you. As a result of higher cacao content, the chocolate will be darker but not dark to the point of bitterness. Chocolate is a delicious addition to most any nutritional regiment, and comes with a beneficial fat-fighting effect in addition to providing benefits to overall health.
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