A very Happy Vegan Valentine’s Day from Mu Mu Muesli to you! Whether it’s the actual holiday or you just want some romantic DIY gift and recipe ideas, you’re in the right place. There’s a wide variety of healthy Valentine’s recipes, as well as a very detailed guide to Vegan gift basket ideas. You can use the links below to quickly find exactly what you’re looking for – enjoy planning your special gifts!
The Health Benefits of Dark Chocolate
+ Delicious Vegan Breakfast Recipes
While milk chocolate is anything but healthy, the health benefits of dark chocolate is a bundle of good news for health-conscious chocolate lovers everywhere. Scroll on for the proven ways dark chocolate is actually good for you!
High Cacao Dark Chocolate is Packed with Nutrition
First, let’s look at the overall nutrition content of dark chocolate. The following nutrients are found in dark chocolate that has at least 70-85% pure cacao*:
- Potassium, selenium, zinc, and phosphorous
- Manganese (98% of the Daily Recommended Intake)
- Copper (89% of the RDI)
- Iron (69% of the RDI)
- Magnesium (58% of the RDI)
- …and a whopping 11 grams of fiber!
*Nutritional values are for a 100 gram serving.
May Help Reduce the Risk for Heart Disease & Related Health Problems
Multiple studies have found that antioxidants in pure dark cacao help prevent oxidative stress and free radical damage of lipoproteins.
For example, consider the following study published in the Journal of Nutrition. It included 160 male participants and spanned a four week period. After a month of ingesting cocoa powder containing high-polyphenolic compounds (antioxidants), researchers measured higher levels of “good” cholesterol and lower levels of “bad” cholesterol.
Another heart-healthy benefit of pure cacao is that it may decrease insulin resistance. Insulin resistance can lead to diabetes and other heart-related problems. In order to learn more, check out the following articles:
- After 15 days of consuming high-polyphenol dark chocolate, test subjects had less insulin sensitivity and lower blood pressure
- Cocoa reduces blood pressure and insulin resistance and improves endothelium-dependent vasodilation in hypertensives.
Finally, take a look at this third impressive study! It spans 15 years, and it includes 470 elderly men. After collecting data from the men for nearly two decades, researchers linked habitual cacao consumption with a 50% reduced risk for death.
This Delicious Type of Chocolate May Also Shield Your Skin from Harmful UV Rays
Another way dark chocolate can boost your health is by protecting your skin. This is due to its flavonols. Flavonols are a type of antioxidant.
According to another article from the Journal of Nutrition, the flavonols are great for your skin!
- One reason is that they increase circulation. As a result, nutrients can move more easily to your skin cells.
- They also help form a stronger skin structure.
- Additionally, flavonols help keep your skin hydrated from within.
- This study also found a connection between eating cacao consumption and reduced damage from the sun’s rays.
Another Positive Effect from Eating Dark Chocolate is Enhanced Brain Power
Dark chocolate can help improve brain functioning in both the short- and long-term. Like coffee, dark chocolate contains stimulants that may enhance cognitive functions soon after eating.
It might also help repair damaged brain functions in elderly individuals.
Thanks for Visiting Mu Mu’s Vegan Food Blog!
As always, we appreciate you! Thanks for stopping by. Enjoy browsing the clean eating food blog archives, and check out Mu Mu Muesli’s online vegan food store for 100% vegan gourmet breakfast foods.
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