February is American Heart Month and there’s no better way to show yourself some love than by enjoying some dark chocolate! Dark chocolate has long been touted as a delicious way to help your heart, and here are some of the great benefits you can reap along the way.
When you nibble on a few ounces of dark chocolate, you will be flooding your body with 11 grams of fiber, 67% DV of Iron, 58% DV of magnesium and 89% of DV copper. Luckily, our artisan chocolate bars are around three oz each, so it’s very easy to grab two and enjoy them all week long.
A very important aspect of your heart is the pumping of blood throughout your body, so that’s why it's crucial your blood pressure stays in check so your heart can perform as efficiently as possible. Dark chocolate has flavanols, which can stimulate endothelium (lining of arteries) to produce nitric oxide (NO). NO signals arteries to relax, which lowers resistance to blood flow, and thus reduces blood pressure. Although the effects are mild, it just chalks up one more reason to treat yourself to some delicious dark chocolate.
If you’re into playing the odds…the odds might be ever in your favor when it comes to adding chocolate to your daily diet. In a study of 470 older men, cocoa was found to reduce risk of death from heart disease by 50% over the course of 15 years. If you enjoy chocolate a few times a week, the study showed calcified plaque reduction in arteries by 32%, but that jumped to 57% when eating chocolate five or more times a week!
When it comes to chocolate, this is the one time where I will fully support peer pressure. Americans are getting the hint that chocolate is approved as a part of a healthy (but satisfying) lifestyle, with purchasing trends of over $22 billion in chocolate a year. At The Chocolate Season, we love using dark chocolate in a multitude of bars and confections…even our sipping chocolate is made from dark chocolate and our kid-friendly puppy chow features a mixture of dark and milk chocolate! Whether you love caramel, fruit, nuts, white, milk or dark chocolate, there’s always something for everyone here at The Chocolate Season. Just make sure to dip your toe in the pool of dark chocolate so your heart, (and your soul), can enjoy the benefits for a lifetime!