According to Medical News Today, chocolate in moderation helps to lower cholesterol and improve blood pressure. It may also reduce the risk of heart disease and cardio-metabolic syndromes by up to 30%. New studies show that chocolate may also prevent memory decline and may play an important role in preventing memory loss in such diseases as Alzheimer’s.
Because of chocolate’s potential role in preventing memory decline and potential association with slowing the progression Alzheimer’s disease, scientists at Harvard medical school are recommending that older patients drink 2 cups of hot chocolate per day, in order to keep the brain healthy and prevent memory decline. An additional study shows that chocolate in moderation may prevent stroke, reducing the risk of stroke by 22%, and reducing the risk of death from stroke by up to 46%. As delicious as healthy chocolate sounds, moderation is still very important. Chocolate is very high in calories and sugar. This can lead to difficulty maintaining a healthy weight and can contribute to tooth decay.
There is also some research that suggests chocolate may contribute to the cause of poor bone structure and osteoporosis. All of the health benefits from chocolate come from the cocoa itself. Therefore, the higher the percentage of cocoa in the chocolate, the purer and healthier it is, in moderation of course. Chocolate with lower percentages of cocoa have more sugars and fillers which make the chocolate unhealthy. High percentages of cocoa can help boost your health with the growth of capillaries in your muscles, including your heart muscles. This leads to more oxygen and nutrients reaching your muscles, which in turn creates more mitochondria, the energy makers in your body. A little bit of chocolate with a high percentage of cocoa can go a long way!