You’ve probably heard of a few different reasons why chocolate is bad for you—from an association with acne to a reputation for contributing to weight gain, chocolate has an undeserved reputation as junk food. While it is important to enjoy chocolate as a treat in moderation, it isn’t the unhealthy food it’s often made out to be. In fact, chocolate can benefit your health in numerous ways, especially if you enjoy dark chocolate, which has a higher concentration of cocoa.

Cocoa, which comes from the seed of the cacao tree, is a nutrient-dense food that boasts plentiful soluble fiber, iron, magnesium, copper, potassium, and manganese, along with powerful antioxidants like polyphenols and flavanols. Thanks to the presence of these nutrients, chocolate can yield the following health benefits.

Lower Blood Pressure

Several controlled studies have shown that cocoa can improve blood flow in the body and reduce blood pressure. Combined with positive effects on blood cholesterol, this effect makes chocolate a heart-healthy food that you can feel good about eating.

Healthier Skin

Flavanols and other antioxidants are so beneficial because they help combat free radicals that damage the body through oxidation, a process that can lead to the development of cancer. The flavanols present in chocolate have been associated with reduced oxidative damage in the skin following sun exposure.

Improved Brain Function

Chocolate has also been linked to a boost in cognitive function thanks to increased blood flow to the brain, along with the presence of stimulating substances like caffeine and theobromine.

Stronger Athletic Performance

The same nutrients in chocolate that benefit your skin can also improve the body’s performance during exercise. One study found that after eating chocolate, athletes used less oxygen during cycling activity and covered a greater distance in a two-minute time trial.

Enjoy all the health benefits of chocolate with the purest flavors and highest quality ingredients with Zotter Chocolate. Our online store offers a huge variety of different chocolates, including our very own hand-scooped chocolates. Our products are all fair trade and organic, so you can always feel good about eating our confections.