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Beyond Blue

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I can’t pass up an opportunity to tell you about the mental health benefits of dark chocolate. Are you kidding me? That would be like skipping the article that says the messier the desk, the more balanced you are and in harmony with the chaos that surrounds you. Diana Walcutt shares some research about my favorite food on a Psych Central post. She writes:

You’ve probably heard the buzz about dark chocolate, and how it’s good for your blood pressure, lowers cholesterol, prevents cancer and can fix nearly anything that is wrong with you, except that expanding waistline. 

Some of dark chocolate’s benefits come from resveratrol, an antioxidant (immune system booster) found in red wine, among other products. Its mental health benefits include the ability to boost brain levels of endorphins (natural opiates) as well as serotonin (a mood-altering chemical on which many antidepressants act). Because it can increase serotonin levels in the brain, dark chocolate also may increase serotonin production in the gut, and thus help your immune system.

But before you decide to switch to an all-dark-chocolate diet and throw away the rabbit food, keep this in mind: The recommended dose is one ounce per day. It doesn’t sound like much, but it may help reduce blood pressure and increase arterial blood flow, reduce the chance of blood clots and lower LDL (bad) cholesterol.

Thanks, Diana, my taste buds are celebrating this bit of news.

To read Diana’s entire post, click here.

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