What type of chocolate is healthier and what happens if I eat it every day?

What type of chocolate is healthier and what happens if I eat it every day?
What type of chocolate is healthier and what happens if I eat it every day?

The consumption of functional foods, such as chocolate, has been the subject of numerous scientific studies that reveal its various benefits for health in general (Illustrative image Infobae)

Although it is one of the most demonized foods for its calorie content, food experts Harvard Medical School They assure that daily intake of chocolate can bring several health benefits, if consumed in the recommended amount.

But in addition to the serving size, those who wish to incorporate this superfood into their diet to benefit from all its health properties should pay attention to the type of chocolate that is consumed.

It’s not the same as it is black, milk or whiteif it is about seeking positive effects on health.

Bryan Johnson recommends eating one serving of high-quality chocolate per day for longevity (Shot from Bryan Johnson’s YouTube channel)

The longevity influencer Brian Johnson He said on his YouTube channel that one of his youth secrets is eating chocolate. And he assured that this ingredient has been key in his diet for three years. to “cheat death”.

However, he clarified that what he consumes is high quality cocoa. Johnson discovered the benefits of chocolate in the midst of his fight against depression for ten years, and in search of what was best for his health.

According to him, ingesting an amount of cocoa per day, he says, improves brain health, the ability to concentrate, long-term memory, cardiovascular health and promotes a good mood. “It is one of the best foods we can consume,” he said.

Chocolate can increase cerebral blood flow, which helps reduce the risk of dementia (Illustrative Image Infobae)

The consumption of functional foods, such as dark chocolate, has been the subject of numerous scientific studies that reveal its various benefits for general health. Namely, some are:

  • Promotes cardiovascular health. A study published in The European Heart Journal concluded that daily consumption of one ounce (equivalent to 28 grams) of chocolate, preferably dark, can reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases due to the flavanols present in cocoa. Likewise, researchers from the German Institute of Human Nutrition Nuthetal determined that a daily intake of between six and eight grams is enough to obtain these cardiac benefits.
  • Improves brain function. The flavanols in dark chocolate have a positive impact on brain function, including better reaction time, visual-spatial awareness, and stronger memory. Although research is being done, one reason for this may be that flavanols increase blood flow to the brain.
  • Control cholesterol. A study published in The Journal of Nutrition challenges common belief by suggesting that consuming chocolate could help reduce levels of LDL cholesterol, also known as “bad cholesterol.” Researchers analyzed the impact of chocolate bars containing plant sterols and cocoa flavonoids on cholesterol levels, finding that their regular consumption, as part of a low-fat diet, can improve cardiovascular health by reducing cholesterol and improving blood pressure. blood pressure.
  • Reduces stress. People who consume dark chocolate report a decrease in their stress levels, an observation supported by researchers who confirmed a reduction in levels of the stress hormone, cortisol, after ingesting this type of chocolate. This correlation could be linked to the benefits of dark chocolate for cardiovascular health, since stress is considered a risk factor for heart disease.
  • Increases sports performance. Research published in The Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition suggest that dark chocolate consumption may improve athletic performance by increasing oxygen availability during physical exercise. Studies conducted with cyclists in the United Kingdom revealed that, after consuming dark chocolate, participants used less oxygen during pedaling at a moderate pace and were able to cover a greater distance in two-minute time trials.

Daily intake of chocolate can bring several health benefits, if consumed in the correct amount (Getty)

The health properties of dark chocolate are vast. Regarding brain function, researchers from the Harvard Medical School have found that consuming two cups of hot chocolate a day can improve cognitive functions in older adults.

Laboratory experiments suggest that cocoa extract could slow cognitive decline associated with memory loss, Alzheimer’s disease and brain nerve dysfunctions.

This is due, according to another study published in Nutritional Neuroscience, because chocolate can increase cerebral blood flowwhich helps reduce the risk of dementia.

Longevity influencer Bryan Johnson said on his YouTube channel that one of his secrets of youth is eating chocolate (Illustrative image Infobae)

In addition to the health benefits of chocolate already seen, this food is also recommended for its psychological effectsfor the feeling of well-being it produces.

This is because cocoa is a natural endorphin generatorthe hormones of happiness and satisfaction, since its consumption immediately causes a feeling of well-being.

Furthermore, according to a publication by National Geographicscience links the consumption of chocolate with an increase in serotonin release in the human brain. As the magazine explains, “serotonin is a chemical substance produced in the brain that is responsible for elevating mood.”

Consequently, experts evaluate that the sensation of wanting to eat chocolate could be a sign of a low level of serotonin in the body and the need to rebuild it by eating the sweet.

No matter how healthy it is, excessive consumption of chocolate can have negative consequences for your health (Getty)

By virtue of all the benefits of chocolate, the professor of the Department of Public Health of the Faculty of Medicine of the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) María del Carmen Iñarritu Pérez recommended consuming a bar of dark or semi-sweet chocolate every day. 10 gramsbut containing at least 70 to 80 percent cocoa.

Beyond the beneficial health properties of chocolate, the consumption of dark chocolate may have contraindications in people who are allergic to cocoa or to any of its components, as well as in those who suffer from heartburnas it can worsen symptoms.

Additionally, dark chocolate contains caffeineso excessive consumption can cause insomnia or nervousness in some people.

In this sense, it is worth clarifying that consume it in excesscarries a series of risks, no matter how healthy it is.

Some of the consequences of frequently eating excessive dark chocolate are:

  • It causes migraines and other headaches.
  • Raises sugar levels.
  • It can cause heart problems and changes in blood pressure.
  • It can cause liver or gallbladder problems in patients with fatty liver.
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