I like chocolate…in fact I might even say I love it…and I am fed up with all of the bad press it gets. It is often on my clients ‘list of comfort foods’ and ‘things they might need to give up’. It’s often described by them as ‘bad’ so I thought that I would share some positive things that chocolate can help with:
1 Skin Protection – a study showed that people who ate 20g of dark chocolate a day over 12 weeks could spend twice as long in front of a UV lamp before their skin reddened, compared to those who had eaten normal chocolate. I wouldn’t recommend you replace your sun lotion with chocolate though.
2 Blood Pressure /Prevention of Liver Damage – Flavanols in cocoa stimulate the body to produce nitrous oxide which helps to open the blood vessels and lower blood pressure. This also improves blood flow in the liver where damage is often caused by high blood pressure in the veins of the liver.
3 Heart Protection – the effects of cocoa in lowering blood pressure, the opening up of the blood vessels, and reducing inflammation could help stave off strokes and heart attacks, and keep our hearts healthy.
4 Mood Enhancer - chocolate contains phenylethylamine (PEA), which is the same chemical that your brain creates when you feel like you’re falling in love. PEA encourages your brain to release feel-good endorphins. This is why it is often on my clients list of comfort foods!
5 Nutrient Provider – did you know that dark chocolate is packed with beneficial minerals such as potassium, zinc and lenium, and a 100g bar of dark (70 per cent or more) choc provides 67 percent of the RDA of iron!
6 Weight Loss – in a study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine, researchers found that people who ate chocolate a few times a week tended to be thinner than those who only ate it occasionally, even when their diet was taken into consideration.
Now I’m not suggesting that you go out and stock up on chocolate, but I’m not saying that you need to stop eating chocolate either.
As with everything, we just need to eat chocolate in moderation. Most commercial chocolate still has lots o ffat, sugar and calories so if you want the benefits without the calories, try adding cocoa to low fat milk, or to your morning oats.
Annalise Kirk is a professional hypnotherapist based in Basingstoke, Hampshire. Annalise has been a qualified, full-time hypnotherapist since 2010 and has helped hundreds of clients achieve their goals and overcome personal issues using hypnosis, CBT and NLP techniques.Follow me on TwitterConnect on LinkedInLike me on Facebook
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