Dark Chocolate & Fruit: A wonderful pair!


Try dipping your favorite fruit or fruits into some melted dark chocolate pieces to satisfy your chocolate craving and provide your body with antioxidants, vitamin C, fiber and other nutrients from the fruit you select. Chocolate is considered a psychoactive food because of its ability to release serotonin, which naturally provides feelings of happiness and well-being. ♥

 

The health benefits of dark chocolate:

-As mentioned above, dark chocolate contains antioxidants, specifically flavonoids, which help to reduce free radicals in our body. Free radicals are known to contribute to cell damage. Ridding our body of these through the use of antioxidants can help prevent certain cancers.
-Some studies have shown that dark chocolate can also help to lower your blood pressure by improving blood flow and reducing blood clots. It only takes a few small pieces each week to reap this benefit.
-Dark chocolate contains important minerals such as potassium, copper, magnesium and iron.

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Be choosy when choosing chocolate! Things to consider:

-The darker the chocolate, the richer the flavonoids. Look for the highest percentage of cocoa you can find. I like the 70% which may be bitter at first to some, but is wonderful once acquired.
-Look for minimal ingredients and one with cocoa butter listed as the fat. This type of fat has a neutral effect on your blood lipid level, unlike many milk chocolates that use trans fat or hydrogenated fats as the fat source.
-Select dark chocolate over milk chocolate. Milk, when combined with flavonoid containing foods, interferes with the absorption of flavonoids which we know are responsible for most of the nutritional benefits that chocolate provides.

Remember chocolate of any kind is rich in calories, fat and often times sugar. While it adds nutritional benefit, we still need to be mindful of frequency and enjoy in moderation.

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