We all love a good sweet treat, and it seems like the sweetest of those always revolve around chocolate. Whether it’s paired with fruit, bread, nuts, caramel, or (other kinds of) chocolate, this sweet treat has been a guilty pleasure for humans since its eruption during the expansion of the British Empire. Previously, we discussed how chocolate (specifically of the darker variety) was great for your health. BUT there is some new research out there that will help you justify giving into those cravings.
- It helps improve your mood! When eating this sweet treat (of any kind), endorphins are released into the body that can ultimately make you feel much better– and this isn’t even from a sugar high, so you won’t crash later!
- Digestive health! For some people, any milk-based products are a big “no-no.” However, for those of us that can tolerate the lactose, chocolate (specifically of the dark variety) is full of fiber that can help keep your digestive system clear and healthy!
- It can work as a preventative measure against skin cancer- yep, you read that correctly! According to Dr. Heinrich, “The flavonols [ingredients in chocolate] can protect against sun-induced damage, improve blood flow to the skin and increase skin density and hydration!” This makes cocoa a FRIEND during the summer, not an enemy!
- Chocolate can help your microbiome! Studies suggest that the good/bad bacteria in this treat can help balance the microbiome while helping your body fight infections through increasing your immunity!
Overall, this smooth, sweet treat isn’t just for Valentine’s day anymore; a little here and there is sure to assist in keeping you healthy! Dark chocolate specifically is a great way to get some antioxidants into your system while treating yourself to something a little sweeter than Orange Juice. In the right amounts, chocolate can promote your overall health and immunity, keeping your mood, skin, and gut clean and healthy!
Whether you choose a supplement or a food source for probiotics, there are a number of avenues available to help you make this healthy lifestyle change.