AAAAA Private Home Health Care


National Chocolate Cupcake Day

National Chocolate Cupcake Day

It is National Chocolate Cupcake Day! Who doesn’t love chocolate cupcakes?! Private Home Care is happy to share that the best part about this treat is that there are many health benefits of eating dark chocolate! 

Dark chocolate is packed with nutrients and rich in antioxidants. The darker the chocolate the better, but any 70 percent dark chocolate or higher contains antioxidants, fiber, potassium, calcium, copper, and magnesium. The fatty acid profile of cocoa and dark chocolate is considered excellent by dieticians. Fatty acids play an important role in cell functioning. The fats are mostly saturated and monounsaturated, with small amounts of polyunsaturated fat. In other words, chocolate boasts ‘good’ fats – the cocoa butter that makes up chocolate contains oleic acid, which is a heart-healthy monounsaturated fat that is also found in olive oil.

Chocolate is good for the heart – Indulging in dark chocolate on a regular basis may reduce the risk of heart disease. Studies found that people who ate dark chocolate more than five times a week reduced their risk of heart disease by 57 percent. Researchers hypothesize it’s the flavonoids in dark chocolate that maintain heart health by lowering blood pressure. These chemicals help produce nitric oxide, which causes blood vessels to relax, improves blood flow to the brain and heart, and makes blood platelets less sticky and able to clot. 

Dark chocolate also helps protect against important risk factors for heart disease because it raises ‘good’ and lowers ‘bad’ cholesterol. Cocoa powder has been found to significantly decrease oxidized LDL cholesterol in men. Oxidized LDL means that the LDL (“bad” cholesterol) has reacted with free radicals, and is capable of damaging other tissues such as the lining of arteries in the heart. It also increased HDL (“good” cholesterol) and lowered total LDL for those with high cholesterol. It makes sense that cocoa lowers oxidized LDL. The abundance of powerful antioxidants found in dark chocolate that when in the bloodstream, they protect lipoproteins against oxidative damage. Also, dark chocolate can also reduce insulin resistance, which is another common risk factor for many diseases like heart disease and diabetes. Insulin resistance is in part thought to be caused by oxidative damage from free radicals, and the antioxidants in cocoa combat that!

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