Fight Heart Disease… With Your Sweet Tooth? (Yum!)

In All Health Watch, General Health

Tell me if you’re heard this one before…

You need to stay away from SWEETS if you want a healthy heart.

Sure, eating mounds of sugar-laden chocolate everyday won’t do your heart any favors – and will likely put you down a path to an increased risk of heart disease.

But, maintaining a healthy heart doesn’t mean you need to eat a diet devoid of anything sweet and decadent…

Because today, I’ve got the scoop on how to harness better heart health with your sweet tooth!

Boost Your Heart with COCOA

A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition has found that incorporating cocoa into your diet can lead to a lower risk of cardiovascular disease-related death.

Yep, the same cocoa that is used to make chocolate!

But, before you start dipping your hand into the candy jar, there’s a catch…

The cocoa I’m talking about isn’t found in a processed candy bar.

It’s the flavanols unique to the cocoa bean – specifically epicatechin.

The study of over 21,000 adults found that those who consumed 500 mg of cocoa flavanols a day reduced their risk of cardiovascular death by 27%.

Again, it’s important to remember that these findings are specific to cocoa beans — not junk food!

But dark chocolate (which is made from the seed of the cocoa tree) is loaded with antioxidants and nutrients that can also positively affect your heart.

In fact, one study found that eating dark chocolate more than five times per week lowered the risk of heart disease by 57%!

When I shop for dark chocolate, I always opt for the quality stuff. It contains less sugar and provides the most brain-boosting bang for your buck.

Read the label to make sure it has at least 70% (or higher) cocoa content. That will ensure you’re getting the proper amount of flavanols from the cocoa beans.

Just remember, dark chocolate is still very calorie-dense, so be sure to stick to the serving size listed on the label.