8 Surprising Health Benefits Of Eating Dark Chocolate

Although we’ve survived the holiday season, we’re still kind of on a highway to the danger fat zone. You most definitely have between one and three tins of Mommy and Grandma’s cookies sitting in your apartment, and some ungodly-sized Ziploc bag filled with chocolate lying on a kitchen counter. It calls to you.

The good news, tho, is that the dark chocolate that has been bestowed upon you isn’t all that bad. Honestly, you shouldn’t even feel guilty about indulging here and there. Here are eight reasons why you can feel kind of okay about diving headfirst into the darkest of desserts.

1. It’s Nutritious AF

It isn’t going to take the place of a salad, but eating dark chocolate is actually pretty good for you. According to Healthline, a 100-gram bar of dark chocolate with more than 70% cocoa has 11 grams of fiber, 67% of the recommended daily intake for iron, 98% of the recommended daily intake for copper, and tons of potassium, zinc, and selenium. Idk what 90% of those things do, but the Internet told me I need it.

2. It Reduces The Risk Of Strokes

OMG yay. According to a 2011 Swedish study, women who ate 45 grams of good quality dark chocolate per week (that’s like, two candy bars) had a 20% lower risk of stroke when compared to women that only ate nine grams or less of the same delicious sh*t. So, basically, keeping a hoard of chocolate in my desk and refusing to share is just me looking out for my stroke risk.

3. It Helps With Math

If you, like me, are declaring 2019 the year of budgeting and calculators and money-saving apps, chocolate can actually help, kinda. According to The Daily Beast, “British psychologists found that flavanols (a class of flavonoids, which are found in chocolate) helped people with their mental math. Study subjects had an easier time counting backwards from a randomly-generated number between 800 and 999 after drinking a cup of hot chocolate than they did without the cocoa.” Wow, so, like, if I chug 800 calories worth of liquid chocolate, there’s a chance I can remember how much money is in my bank account better than if I don’t chug chocolate! Neat!

4. It’s Full Of Antioxidants

According to Cosmo, dark chocolate has the same amount of antioxidants as apples. Mind explosion. Why do we care? Cause antioxidants can fight v uncool sh*t like the appearance of wrinkles and the early onset of not chill things like Parkinson’s.

5. It’ll Make You Less Stressed

… and you won’t be overcome with guilt after eating it, since it’s practically a vegetable, what with all of it’s good-for-you sh*t. A study found that people who rated themselves as highly stressed (slowly raises hand) found themselves feeling significantly LESS stressed after eating chocolate every day for two weeks.

6. It’ll Boost Your Sexytime Drive

LOL bring on the libido. You’ve got to eat A LOT of chocolate for it to make a big diff, but the point is that dark chocolate contains phenylethylamine, which, according to the scientists at Cosmo, is a chemical the body releases in response to physical attraction. So, logically, chocolate = brain alert that something or someone is hot.

7. It’s Great For Weight Loss

According to Women’s Health, “Researchers from the University of Copenhagen found that dark chocolate is far more filling, offering more of a feeling of satiety than its lighter-colored sibling. That is, dark chocolate lessens cravings for sweet, salty, and fatty foods.” In other words, chocolate makes you feel full so that you’re less likely to eat cookies, cheesy blasters, hot dogs, etc.

8. It’s Good For Your Skin

Literally yes. Chocolate contains skin-protecting chemicals that can actually act as internal sunscreen. In a study done by some dessert-obsessed German scientists, it was found that flavonoids in dark chocolate protected women’s skin from the sun. Wow, science.

So, there you have it. Now get out there and crush a half-pound chocolate bar like the health freak you are. Just make sure it’s dark chocolate, or else all bets are off.

Images: Shutterstock; Giphy (4)

Sarah Nowicki
Sarah Nowicki
Sarah Nowicki aka Betchy Crocker writes about food, fashion, and whatever else she's in the mood to complain about for Betches and like, some other people. She resides in Asheville, NC, where she spends her time judging hipsters and holding on to her Jersey heritage and superiority. Yell at her on Instagram @sarahnowicholson