Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Chocolate, a Heart Healthy Treat!

Chocolate, delicious and heart healthy, who knew!  Cocoa, the main ingredient in chocolate, contains heart healthy anti-oxidants called flavonals. Studies have shown that these flavonals can help relax blood vessels lowering blood pressure and improving blood flow to prevent formation of blood clots. Research has also found that eating dark chocolate may help prevent atherosclerosis (hardening of the blood vessels). So, what better than some chocolate for your sweetheart this Valentine's day, something they will love and their heart will too!

Here are some tips for picking out the perfect heart healthy treat!.....

The Best Chocolates for your Heart

1) Choose chocolate that contains 70% or higher cocoa. The higher the % of cocoa, the more antioxidants per ounce!

2) Choose chocolates that contain nuts.
 The nuts contain heart healthy fats which can help lower “bad” LDL cholesterol.

3) Dip fruit in melted dark chocolate. Fruit will help cut calories and add an extra dose of antioxidants!

4) Choose portion controlled chocolates.
Chocolate is good for you in small portions,
but the calories and fat can add up quick!
You will be less likely to overindulge if chocolate
 is packaged in smaller portions.