Unknown Facts about Chocolates

April 25, 2012 Comments Off

Chocolate has a fascinating history; the Mayans thought that cocoa was a cure for everything, while the Aztecs used it as money. Today it is considered one of the most popular comfort food and most women can’t seem to survive without it. All the obsession with chocolates, has lead to extensive research about it. Here are some unknown facts about chocolates that you probably are not aware of:

Chocolate will improve your workout
You can forget the pricey sports drinks and protein shake because research indicates that chocolate milk works just as effectively. The journal known as Applied Physiology, Nutrition and Metabolism published a study that monitored athletes who drank recovery drink and athletes who drank chocolate milk after their training. The researchers discovered that chocolate milk also helped atheles relieve muscle soreness like recovery drinks did. Moreover, there is no doubt about the fact that chocolate milk tasted better than any recovery drink.

Women psychologically crave chocolates during their menstrual cycle
In the University of Pennsylvania, researchers found that menstrual hormones have nothing to do with women’s craving for chocolates. According to Annmarie Kostyk, who is a chocolate expert and have studied from the Professional School of Chocolate Arts, women probably crave chocolate because it is a major comfort food, and it helps them feel better.

Chocolate won’t keep you awake
Kostyk mentioned that it is a common misconception among individuals who chocolate contains large amounts of caffeine. The reality is that chocolate has only miniscule amount of caffeine. There are only 20 milligrams of caffeine in an ounce of dark chocolate and an ounce of milk chocolate contains even less caffeine – 5 milligrams. However, if you drink a cup of coffee, you will consume 100 milligrams of caffeine and 50 milligrams of caffeine if you prefer tea.

Chocolate has flavonoids
Flavonoids are phytochemicals; these are chemical compounds that are found in plants. Phytochemicals have unusual chemical structures that give flavonoids its antioxidant, cell-protective and anti-inflammatory properties. According to Gianna Angelo, who is a research associate at Oregon State University, flavonoids reduce risk of heart disease. Dark chocolate, in particular, contains more flavonoids. An average dark chocolate found in stores has 536 milligrams of flavonoids per 1.4 ounce serving. Extensive research indicates that consuming 80 milligrams of flavonoids daily can decrease blood pressure.

Chocolate is not completely bad for your teeth
Chocolate contains an organic molecule called theobromine that is found in cocoa. A research conducted at Tulane University found that this molecule strengthens the tooth’s enamel. Furthermore, the American Dental Association stated that it took 100 times less cocoa extracts to have twice the protective benefits of fluoride. Unfortunately, the sugar and milk in the chocolate bars counteract the benefits of theobromine.

So the next time you dub chocolate as your “guilty pleasure,” think again! Chocolate not only helps improve your mood, but it has great health benefits as well. Enjoy chocolate in moderation and indulge your cravings when you are depressed and need something to lighten your mood.

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