Posts Tagged ‘hot chocolate’

Give Your Brain & Heart a Boost on World Chocolate Day

To prepare for this post, I ate a couple of Snickers Minis.

Cheerful woman eating chocolate © Can Stock Photo konradbakToday is World Chocolate Day. Chocolate is good for the heart and brain, studies show, so if you have been avoiding it to slim down you just may have a stupid heart attack. It also reduces stress in women, which is why chocolate is a popular and heartwarming Valentine’s Day gift.

Forget why you walked into a room? Drink a cup or two of hot chocolate.  Harvard Medical School scientists found that drinking two cups of hot chocolate a day reduces memory decline in old folks. It apparently increases blood flow to the brain for two to three hours. But you don’t have to be a geezer to enjoy the benefits. Flavonoids in chocolate have been shown to increase brain power in youngin’s too.

A study conducted in Denmark found consumption of dark chocolate results in a significantly lower risk of being diagnosed with atrial fibrillation, a dangerous type of irregular heartbeat. The study didn’t say you wouldn’t develop it, only that you won’t be diagnosed with it. Ignorance is bliss, right?

Speaking of bliss, chocolate also is associated with increased endorphins, that feel-good brain chemical. It triggers a neurotransmitter similar to consuming marijuana. A legal high in all states! (Keep this quiet though so the government doesn’t feel a need to regulate or outlaw it.) Chocolate is so powerful that its buzz lasts longer than the most passionate kiss, according to one study.

Which doesn’t mean chocolate will slow you down in bed. The compound theobromine in chocolate is thought to make it a mild aphrodisiac.

Chocolate also contains a substantial amount of magnesium, which reduces stress by suppressing the release of the stress hormone cortisol.

So stop stressing about eating chocolate and instead embrace its benefits to your brain and heart. Give it to a lover and you just may get lucky tonight. World Chocolate Day: Valentine’s Day in July.

Resources:

Sunni, Ahmed Al, and Rabia Latif. “Effects of chocolate intake on Perceived Stress; a Controlled Clinical Study.” International Journal of Health Sciences. October 2014. Accessed July 07, 2017. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4350893/.

Alban, Deane. “9 Brain Boosting Benefits of Dark Chocolate.” Be Brain Fit. June 19, 2017. Accessed July 07, 2017. https://bebrainfit.com/brain-benefits-dark-chocolate/.

“Health | Chocolate ‘better than kissing’.” BBC News. April 16, 2007. Accessed July 07, 2017. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/6558775.stm.

Nordqvist, Joseph. “Chocolate: Health Benefits, Facts, and Research.” Medical News Today. June 1, 2016. Accessed July 07, 2017. http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/270272.php.

“Study strengthens case for heart benefit in chocolate.” Harvard Gazette. June 26, 2017. Accessed July 07, 2017. http://news.harvard.edu/gazette/story/2017/06/study-strengthens-case-for-heart-benefit-in-chocolate/.

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Tom Pfeifer is the managing partner and chief strategist for Consistent Voice Communications and author of Write It, Speak It: Writing a Speech They’ll APPLAUD! Reach him at Tom@YourConsistentVoice.com.

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