Chocolate is Good For Your Heart

(Photo courtesy of

(Photo courtesy of

Catherine Le, Staff Writer

Valentine’s Day is a holiday meant for loving and caring one another.  How do we express it?  One way is by giving each other gifts.  The most common gift people would give to their lover would be chocolate.  There are many types of chocolates, from dark chocolate to milk chocolate to white chocolate.  With a variety of chocolates in an ornate box, anyone would love it.

Although chocolate’s intriguing taste is one reason to love it, there’s another, more beneficial reason to love chocolate. You may not know this but chocolate can actually help improve your health, especially your cardiovascular system.  The reason for that is because the cocoa beans from which the chocolate is produced are copious with antioxidants called flavonoids. Flavonoids are nutrients found in plants that aid in repairing damage and also provides protection. When it comes to chocolates, it’s specifically flavonols, which is a type of flavonoid.  It said that out of the types of chocolates, dark chocolate is the kind that benefits the cardiovascular system most.  The reason is because dark chocolate has the highest amount of flavonoids since it has at least 60% of cocoa solids.  The flavonoids found in chocolate help lower blood pressure, improve blood flow to the brain and heart, and keep your heart pumping at a healthy rate.  Plus, they help expand your blood vessels, which reduces the risk of plaque buildup and stiffening of the arteries.  Nonetheless, surprising as it is, chocolate is not as bad as you might believe it is.

There are some things you need to know before you start grabbing the chocolate bars from stores.  The benefits that the chocolate gives is only for a short amount of time.  It depends on how much you eat and your overall body weight because your heart rate is affected by body weight. If your body weight is high above the average weight for your age, you should eat chocolate in smaller portions. Otherwise, the chocolate will end up having a negative impact on your cardiovascular health and your overall health.  Take this into consideration and make chocolate a part of your weekly balanced diet.