FROM EINSTEIN ON THE BEACH TO WILLY WONKA IN YOUR BACK POCKET.
With my last Coffee with Cote’ in April, I had the pleasure of typing away enjoying some fabulous Florida sunshine while (of course) sipping my morning coffee. What happiness a little sand, plenty of sun and a family spring break far away from a cold and snowy Michigan winter can bring. Well what if we add a little whip cream and cherry to the top of the sundae?
OK – Not really, whip cream or the cherry on top, but how about a sweet little bonus that, in my book, is one of the best guilty pleasures you can have? CHOCOLATE!
Chocolate – hmm, how the heck does chocolate ever become part of someone’s health journey and how can it in any way promote better health for improved outcomes? Well read on readers…
A number of studies report the benefits of giving into this guilty indulgence:
- A recent study in England of over 20,000 adults concluded that chocolate might be the secret weapon against heart disease, as it appears that chocolate improves artery function while reducing blood pressure.
- In 2015, a study by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition discovered that having chocolate just twice a week may help lessen the risk of Type 2 diabetes.
- Other studies demonstrate improved blood flow, oxygen levels and nerve function as measured by imaging of the brain after consumption of chocolate.
- And finally, studies also show that you crave chocolate when you are a bit down in the dumps, as study after study support it can make things appear a bit sunnier after consumption (again in moderation so that the old belt buckle isn’t telling you something else).
So why chocolate, you ask? The cocoa bean, which chocolate is made of, has a high source of antioxidants including flavonoids and polyphenols, which create a great combination to fight off radicals and repair body damage. Want more proof on the healing powers of chocolate and how this combination is put to good use? Just run a local 10k or ½ marathon and, you guessed it, when your race is completed you now are greeted with many bottles of chocolate milk for your cool down.
And who would have ever guessed that the place with the highest Nobel Prize winners is also known globally for the highest Chocolate intake (Germany). Maybe that Einstein (both German and Nobel Prize Winner in 1921) was onto something…