Chocolate...Why we love it dark!
Updated: Feb 6
Dark chocolate is a rich source of flavonoids, which are plant-based antioxidants that have been shown to have numerous health benefits. Studies have found that consuming dark chocolate can lower blood pressure, improve blood flow, and reduce the risk of heart disease.
One study published in the journal "Heart" found that consuming a small amount of dark chocolate daily for two weeks significantly reduced blood pressure in individuals with hypertension. Another study published in the "European Journal of Clinical Nutrition" found that consuming dark chocolate improved blood flow in healthy individuals.
Dark chocolate is also high in cocoa solids, which contain flavanols, a type of flavonoid that has been shown to have anti-inflammatory effects. This may help reduce the risk of chronic diseases such as cancer, diabetes, and heart disease.
Additionally, dark chocolate contains a small amount of caffeine and theobromine, both of which can boost cognitive function and mood. A study published in the "Journal of Psychopharmacology" found that consuming dark chocolate improved attention and task-switching abilities in healthy adults.
It's worth noting that not all dark chocolate is created equal, so it's important to look for chocolate that contains at least 70% cocoa solids for maximum health benefits. At Rebel we use dark chocolate in many of our products from the Triple Chocolate Walnut Cookie to our Sweet Potato Brownies!
Consuming dark chocolate in moderation is important, as it can be high in calories and sugar.
Photo by Joanna Kosinska
References: "Effect of cocoa and tea intake on blood pressure: a meta-analysis." Heart. 2007 Jan;93(1):13-9.
"Flavanoid-rich dark chocolate improves endothelial function and increases plasma epicatechin concentrations in healthy adults." J Am Coll Nutr. 2004 Aug;23(4):197-204.
"Short-term administration of dark chocolate is followed by a significant increase in insulin sensitivity and a decrease in blood pressure in healthy persons." Am J Clin Nutr. 2005 Feb;81(2):611-4
"Cocoa polyphenols and brain function." Nestle Nutr Inst Workshop Ser. 2014;76:15-26
"Dose-dependent changes in cognitive performance and mood after acute administration of a single dose of cocoa flavanols." Psychopharmacology (Berl). 2010 Jan;207(3):873-82.