For centuries Theobroma Cacao has been considered luxurious, coveted, and heavenly. In fact according to Aztec mythology, chocolate was brought down from the heavens by a god named Quetzacoatl. Chocolate may be delicious and mouth-watering, but other than its taste does it have any other real benefits? Going against the popular opinion, the answer is surprisingly, yes. Hold on though, only dark chocolate has these hidden benefits. Milk and white chocolate have no other perks to them, but actually have downsides. What extra advantages does dark chocolate really have? Well, primarily health benefits. Dark chocolate can help lower your blood pressure, increase your heart health, and help the battle against diabetes and cancer.
Dr. Dirk Taubert, MD, PhD, conducted a study in Cologne, Germany, to observe whether or not dark chocolate really did lower blood pressure. Dr. Taubert gathered 44 men and women with hypertension, or high blood pressure, and commanded that 22 adults eat one dark chocolate Hershey’s Kiss two hours after dinner each night for 18 weeks. The other 22 did the same except with a white chocolate Kiss instead of dark chocolate. After the 18 weeks the results where in, those eating the dark chocolate had lowered their diastolic and systolic blood pressure by more than five points, while the blood pressure of those with the white Kisses had not budged. Taubert reports that even thought the effects of the test were small, the results are still very clinically noteworthy. The speculated cause of this breakthrough is flavonoids in chocolate. Flavonoids are pigments found within plants that have numerous heath wonders to them. There are many types of flavonoids, but in the case of chocolate the type is catechins. These catechins are absorbed into your blood stream and then increase blood flow to your arteries, lowering blood pressure.
The Moli-Sani project was one of the Europe’s largest health studies ever conducted. The study brought in a large amount of Europeans and found that about five thousand of the people who ate dark chocolate occasionally throughout their life of anywhere from 45-55 years, had excellent heart health. Again flavonoids were responsible. The flavonoids reduced the inflammation in the heart’s chambers, increasing health. Every single person’s heart builds up inflammation, which is fat deposits your body puts in the chambers of your heart to help fight off infection and disease if it ever comes. The problem is, is that to much of these deposits can cause heart attacks and other ailments. The flavonoids help reduce these fatty build-ups lessening the chance of heart attacks and such.
Italian researchers at the University of L’Aquila have found that Theobroma Cacao once again has incredible health benefits, this time, the lowering of insulin resistance. Insulin is a hormone that is produced by the pancreas to help break down food into a healthy glucose which then fuels our bodies, without insulin the body would be losing its main source of fuel and as you can imagine wreak havoc and destruction on the body. Men and women with diabetes build up a resistance to insulin and the pancreas either stops making it or is does make it, but without effect. The L’Aquila study has proven that small amounts of dark chocolate actually reduce the insulin resistance in diabetics significantly, thus helping to end the battle against diabetes. Dr. Dickson, Georgetown University, has said that aspects and components of chocolate have cancer fighting properties. The hero of the natural remedy world, flavonoids, is responsible once again. Yes, flavonoids can not only lower blood pressure, help your heart, battle against diabetes, but can also fight against cancer. The natural antioxidants found in flavonoids can actually erase the cancer from cells that in the past have been infected with the disease. Scientists and MDs are still trying to figure this miraculous fact out. Although numerous studies and individuals, such as the ones mentioned above and studies by the National Dietetic Association, have shown that even though they don’t know how, they know that dark chocolate does help wrestle against cancer.
It seems like the food of the gods is not only delicious and luxuriant, but really does have other benefits. Look back and remember the results of Dr. Taubert’s studies with hypertensive men and women and how their hypertension was diminished. Remember the Moli-Sani project with the outcomes of preventing fat build-ups within the chambers of your heart. Recall the foot-holds that the L’Aquila researchers found in the battle against diabetes; how chocolate reduces insulin resistance in diabetics. All thanks to the wonderful, luscious, dark chocolate. I will certainly be experimenting with these studies myself. The Aztecs thought that the god Quetzacoatl brought down chocolate from the heavens, maybe they were half right, maybe chocolate is a gift from god. So now, go, and enjoy some of the miracles of Theobroma Cacao.