7 Mind and Body Benefits You Get From Eating Dark Chocolate

by Sergio Rivera

Benefits of Dark Chocolate

There aren’t a lot of metaphorical connections between manliness and chocolate per se. Admit it, the mental image of Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson munching away a bar of chocolate in the gym may seem a bit awkward if not totally ridiculous.

But trust me, chocolate is as manly as steak, scotch, and chest hair.

For example, a World War I journal written in 1917 depicts how a cup of hot chocolate gave weary and wounded soldiers the vigor they need to fight another day:

“Early and late he toiled over a troublesome gasoline stove to prepare hot cocoa for the wayfarers…Wounds had taken all the “sand” out of them, and the hot cocoa was a welcome tonic for the weary and wounded marchers.”

The same was true centuries back, up in the Mesoamerican mountain ranges where the Aztecs were giving their enemies a run for their money. You guessed it right if you thought that chocolate made Aztec warriors a menace in battle as they regularly drank a frothy mixture of ground cocoa, water, and spices.

And if that wasn’t enough reason for them to love chocolate, the drink was also considered sacred as it contained a lot of mind and body benefits. Aztecs even refer to it as “The Food of the Gods.”

So, you want a body of a God? Munch on chocolate! And while you’re at it, make sure you’re eating the dark variant.

Although dark chocolate contains more calories than milk chocolate, it’s still the better option having twice the number of healthy fats (which is why it has more calories), less sugars (which means chocolate fits in your low-carb diet well), and four times the fiber. Dark chocolate also contains more minerals, giving you better all round nutrition.

Milk chocolate is more sugar than it is chocolate. It contains only 10-20% cocoa, with up to 12% milk solids, and the rest full of sugar and fillers, many of which are estrogenic in nature.

So my recommendation is you go for dark chocolate with a the highest amount of cocoa content you can find – at least around the 70% mark, but ideally in the 85-100% range. Why? Because more cocoa means more health benefits such as:

  1. Improved insulin sensitivity. Studies in the last five years have proven that dark chocolate is effective in improving your sensitivity to insulin. The flavanols in dark chocolate allow for the formation of Nitric Oxide compounds which in turn optimize your body’s reaction to insulin. Insulin sensitivity is the cornerstone of every fat loss endeavor. With this you ensure that your body is primed for fat metabolism as opposed to fat storage.
  2. Testosterone Boost and Estrogen Regulation. Dark chocolate contains zinc that boosts testosterone levels and magnesium, which regulates estrogen levels.
  3. Stimulation. Dark chocolate contains stimulants, namely caffeine and theobromine. It also contains Phenylethylamine, which makes you more alert. Feeling a little hazy today? Eat dark chocolate and you’ll be buzzing in minutes!
  4. Improved Energy. Much like garlic, a serving of dark chocolate contains a good amount of Nitric Oxide forming compounds. Nitric Oxide improves blood flow into the muscles, giving you more pump in the gym, thereby enhancing your muscle gain and fat loss altogether!
  5. Reduced inflammation. Dark chocolate has anti-inflammatory properties. Inflammation is not only associated with deadly diseases like heart disease and cancer, but it’s also associated with weight gain and obesity. Studies also show that inflammation prevents muscle growth. So if you are looking to lose weight and pack on some muscle, then look for foods – like dark chocolate – that actively reduce inflammation.
  6. Feel Good Effect. The Phenylethylamine and Tryptophan found in dark chocolate are responsible for the release of the neurotransmitters dopamine and serotonin respectively. Dopamine, aside from being a natural painkiller, heightens your mood and makes you feel good. Serotonin on the other hand is your body’s natural mood regulator. No wonder chocolate is a well-known comfort food.
  7. A host of other health benefits. Studies have shown that dark chocolate lowers blood pressure. The flavonoids from the cocoa improve blood flow to the heart and brain, prevent blood clots, and act as an anti-inflammatory agent.

Chocolate is also a rich source of antioxidants. So by eating a good amount of chocolate on a regular basis, you’re not only protecting yourself from diseases, you’re also decelerating your body’s aging process.

And if you’re looking for a boost in the bedroom, the Nitric Oxide compounds in dark chocolate will boost your erections, making you a beast in bed!

So if you want to diminish those man boobs fast, and sculpt that manly body you’ve always wanted, get into the habit of eating dark chocolate regularly.

This stuff is truly a superfood, giving you ample nutrition, while at the same time serving as a potent mood and vitality enhancer.

But this does not mean that you can eat all the dark chocolate you want. Cocoa is powerful stuff. It’s good in small quantities, but things can go the other way if you eat too much of it.

Stimulants like caffeine and theobromine in cocoa can lead to addiction, insomnia and a fast heartbeat. Too much cocoa can also result in reduced insulin sensitivity and poor blood sugar control.

Two ounces, that’s a little less than 60 grams, should be enough to give you the virility you need to tackle the day’s challenges.

Got a chocolate story to share? Every chocolatey story deserves an audience so let’s hear it in the comments section below!

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