Everyone should follow a diet that is healthy for their heart so they can live longer, and lower their risk of diseases. Many crave the sweet indulgence of chocolate and now with heart healthy chocolate we can give into those cravings while giving a boost to our heart.
25 foods listed in Prevention Magazine are said to be the best foods for our heart health. Of course the usuals appeared on this list: fruits and vegetables, Omega 3 fatty acids ( found in fish) and then a surprise! The magazine took information from a study that said that people who eat 20 grams a day of dark chocolate had shown an increased performance in terms of blood flow.
The operative word here to remember is dark chocolate. This means not to think that the kind of chocolate you get when you buy a chocolate bar is heart healthy. That kind of chocolate is processed and does not contain as much cocoa as you think. According to the study mentioned, the nitric oxide in dark chocolate is responsible for the improvement of blood flow because it helps with arterial dilatation.
It’s important to note that milk seems to inhibit the body’s ability to absorb chocolate that is heart healthy. So to be heart healthy chocolate it cannot contain milk in the ingredients, and one should not consume milk while indulging in heart healthy chocolate. This is the same for tea. Adding milk to your tea lessens the benefits you get from tea.
Two types of heart healthy chocolate often named are: CocoaVia and Xocai. Antioxidants, flavonoids, and phytosterols are what cause the health benefits of heart healthy chocolate. Dark chocolate has 8 times more antioxidants than what is in strawberries.
Another benefit of heart healthy chocolate is that it lowers blood pressure and the negative effects of cholesterol, thereby lowering risk of heart disease. Amazingly, a Harvard study showed that those at risk for heart disease could lower their risk by as much as 19% by eating heart healthy chocolate.
From as far back as ancient times, there have been stories about the heart benefits of chocolate. Since research has begun to show that these stories are true, more people (50%) are now eating heart healthy chocolate.
In most healthy chocolate this is on the gourmet side, the ingredients will be listed, as well as saying where the cocoa beans were grown. It is best to look for beans that were harvested in Columbia, the Ivory Coast, the Amazon, and Ecuador. These place produce beans that appear to have more of the heart benefits than others. By adding heart healthy chocolate to your diet, you get to both indulge and improve your heart health!
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