Since we have just celebrated World Chocolate Day I thought it would be apt to highlight some of the health benefits of cocoa powder - the main ingredient of chocolate!
Firstly here are the nutritional values of cocoa powder:
Based on these high nutritional values here are some health benefits of cocoa powder:
Stabilizes Blood Pressure
The flavonoids found in cocoa beans not only lowers blood pressure but it also improves the elasticity of veins and blood vessels. The antioxidants in cocoa also increases the stimulation of nitric oxide to control the exerted pressure of blood vessels.
Maintains Cholesterol Levels
Based on recent findings, cocoa has hypocholesterolemic and hypoglycemic effects on both cholesterol levels and glucose respectively. Researchers have observed a prominent reduction in LDL cholesterol (the bad cholesterol), glucose level, and triglycerides in people consuming cocoa powder. Additionally, cocoa increases the level of HDL (healthy cholesterol) in the blood which leads to diminishing the risk of heart disease.
Consuming cocoa powder can have good effects on your mood which help you release stress levels. Its antidepressant effects facilitates certain physiological processes. Plus, the presence of neurochemical phenylethylamine in cocoa powder helps enhance feelings of satisfaction and promote aphrodisiac effects simultaneously.
Cocoa is one of the natural ingredients that can be used to maintain skin health. Research shows that flavanol in cocoa decreases the hazardous effects of ultraviolet rays and reduce scaling and roughness of skin. Moreover, it enhances skin elasticity, density and hydration.
Cocoa is a nutritionally rich substance that has multiple health benefits for your body. However, remember everything in moderation!