Modern science is proving that dark chocolate isn’t just delicious, it can actually lead to good health. Here are seven facts (and a few debunked myths) about your health and chocolate you might not know:
- Eating Chocolate Can Be Good for Your Teeth. Unsweetened chocolate has antibacterial elements that actually fight tooth decay. One caveat though: most chocolate products (candy bars, truffles, etc.) are made with LOTS of sugar, which is not good for your teeth and will lead to decay.
- Chocolate is Good For Your Heart. Just like red wine and green tea, unprocessed cacao has flavonoids (compounds that contain antioxidants), which help to slow down and prevent damage to the body caused by free radicals. It is believed that antioxidants may help to decrease blood pressure and improve blood flow and circulation. This applies to dark chocolate only. Milk chocolate contains one-half the amount of antioxidants and is usually loaded with sugar and fats.
- Chocolate Does Not Make Your Skin Break Out. We were all threatened as teenagers that if we ate chocolate we would have a face full of blemishes. Several current scientific studies show that eating chocolate does not cause acne, and has no negative effect on the skin.
- Chocolate Does Not Raise Your Cholesterol. Hard to believe I know, but the fats in cocoa butter do not raise bad cholesterol (LDL) levels. One of the fats in chocolate, stearic acid is a neutral fat. Another found in chocolate, oleic acid, is the same type found in olive oil. Oleic acid may even raise good cholesterol (HDL) levels.
- Ancient Mayans Used Chocolate as Medicine. The Mayans believed that chocolate improved one’s health and had strong medicinal properties. Young men preparing for battle drank it as a stimulant. In addition Cacao butter was used to heal wounds.
Did you know that one tropical fruit can be used as a substitute for IV fluid in an emergency? Or that another tropical treat has been shown in studies to kill cancer cells? Aside from their health benefits, there are plenty of other reasons to love the following tropical fruits and some of these benefits will definitely surprise you.
Late August is the appropriate time to celebrate this day because the harvest of garden herbs is at its peak.
Most of the sodium we consume comes from processed foods. The rest comes from the salt added at the table and salt added while cooking. Limit the amount of sodium that you consume a day to about 1 teaspoon of salt.
Read food labels. Choose foods that have the lowest Percent Daily Value for sodium. Look for labels such as “reduced sodium,”sodium free,” and “no salt added.”
Choose fruits and vegetables as snacks instead of chips and crackers which can be high in sodium.