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The Good News About Chocolate

Nov 20, 2011 05:35PM ● By Erin Frisch

Chocolate

There’s nothing quite as satisfying as rich, delicious chocolate—and the health benefits are pretty sweet, too. Chocolate is rich in antioxidants, which help protect our cells from damage. Research links the antioxidants in chocolate to heart-healthy benefits, including a decreased risk of cardiovascular disease and stroke.

But don’t just reach for any type of chocolate. A good rule of thumb when it comes to chocolate is the darker, the better. Dark chocolate, which is less processed than milk chocolate, contains higher antioxidant levels. Also be mindful of calories—a dark chocolate candy bar with caramel and marshmallow is by no means a heart-healthy option. Go for plain dark chocolate and consume it in moderation.

Looking for a healthier treat for your sweetheart this holiday season? Dip cherries in melted dark chocolate and let them harden on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet in the fridge for about 15 minutes. Have a small piece of dark chocolate with a few almonds and walnuts to snap you out of that midday slump. This simple snack will provide antioxidants, healthy fats, and protein—and satisfy your sweet tooth.

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