The healthcare benefits of dark chocolate
The healthcare benefits of dark chocolate
… The Olmec’s are the earliest known humans to develop a taste for Cacao beans …

Why is Dark Chocolate a Healthier Choice for Valentine’s Day?

When it comes to Dark chocolate versus Milk chocolate; cocoa is the tie-breaking element

John G. Baresky

February is fast approaching and chocolate is a Valentine’s Day staple. Over 55 million pounds of chocolate are sold during the week leading up to Valentine’s day. Chocolate is not an essential food group nor an essential vitamin but its popularity deserves attention on any given day. There are those persons who swear to the benefits of Dark chocolate and others which consider Milk chocolate to be their preferred formulation of cocoa.

In the Smithsonian Magazine article, “What We Know About The Earliest History Of Chocolate” author Josie Garthwaite and cultural arts curator Hayes Lavis note the historical record indicates the Olmecs of Southern Mexico were consuming cacao as long as 1500 years ago. Pots and vessels recovered from Olmec archeological sites have contained traces of theobromine, a chemical found in cacao.

Theobromine is an alkaloid with a structure similar to caffeine but it is much weaker in potency. There is research that indicates theobromine lowers blood pressure which benefits cardiovascular health. Chalk up a quick health win for chocolate lovers and other consumers of products containing cocoa.

Companies like Fererro, Hershey, Lindt & Sprüngli, Mars, Mondelez, Nestle generate millions of dollars in chocolate product sales annually. It is estimated about 4.5 million tons of cocoa beans are harvested annually. Listed alphabetically are some of the leading countries in cacao bean agricultural production:

  • Brazil
  • Cameroon
  • Côte d’Ivoire
  • Ecuador
  • Ghana
  • Indonesia
  • Mexico
  • Nigeria

Purist or not, Dark chocolate may frequently contain milk and for persons with milk protein allergies, Dark chocolate may not be a safe alternative to Milk chocolate. All things considered, there some health benefits to consider when choosing to give or consume Dark or Milk chocolate.

  1. Dark chocolate and Milk chocolate have these and other minerals within their contents:
  • Copper
  • Iron
  • Magnesium
  • Manganese
  • Phosphorous
  • Potassium
  • Selenium
  • Zinc

2) The organic ingredient makeup of Dark and Milk chocolate feature catechins, flavonols and polyphenols which are antioxidants

3) Dark chocolate has more fiber than Milk chocolate

4) Milk chocolate typically has more sugar in its recipes than dark chocolate

5) Dark chocolate has a greater amount of cocoa within its contents; cocoa features Theobromine and Theophylline which may provide respiratory benefits

The winner in terms of healthcare benefits is Dark chocolate. Depending on the judge, their palate and its taste preferences could be the final decision-maker. Whether the cocoa confection of your choice is Dark chocolate or Milk chocolate, enjoy and indulge in each with moderation.

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Read my other articles about medical and healthcare business trends, content marketing and digital strategy, brand and product management, consumer wellness, managed care and market access strategy. Contact me today for your healthcare content writing and content strategy needs.

I have over 20 years of experience in the healthcare industry producing valuable healthcare content for audiences and customers spanning physicians, nurses, pharmacists plus pharmaceutical companies, medical technology manufacturers, healthcare provider organizations, managed care, investors, consumers and other stakeholders.

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As a healthcare content writer, my work aligns with an organization’s voice, brand, SEO elements, marketplace and objectives. It establishes trust in their company and recognized value in its products and services that generates revenue.

This experience was earned through working at Walgreens, Pfizer, AbelsonTaylor, TAP (Takeda Abbott Partnership), Hospira Worldwide and Boston Software Systems. ​

To a large degree, my professional interests emulate my family which includes doctors, nurses, physician assistants and other clinicians plus those that are working in healthcare administration and commercial enterprises.

A special thanks to our historical authority on cocoa, The Smithsonian Institute of Washington, D.C. and its Smithsonian Magazine article “What We Know About the Earliest History of Chocolate” by Josie Garthwaite, 2/12/2015

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