Do you love dark chocolate?! Your dentist is Fort Lauderdale does. Whether it's Valentines Day, Halloween, or any given Wednesday, it's always a good time for a little square of dark chocolate. It's almost therapuetic. So when we found out that dark chocolate is not just tasty but is also good for you, we had to share the news!
Is dark chocolate healthy?
Yes it is! Of dark chocolate, milk chocolate and white chocolate, dark chocolate is the healthiest option of the three because it is the least processed and closest to the cocoa bean. Cocoa beans, the main ingredient in your favorite dark chocolate bar, are rich in antioxidants making dark chocolate an antioxidant-rich superfood. It can improve your mood, reduce your risk of heart disease and may even help prevent cancer. It is reported that 1-2 ounces of dark chocolate each day can help you lose weight! The best dentistry news is that because dark chocolate is full of antioxidants (about four times as much as green tea), it can inhibit the production of plaque, reduce inflammation in the body and work to prevent periodontal disease, a symptom of which is swelling of the gums. So how can your dentist in Fort Lauderdale not give dark chocolate the thumbs up?!
Dark chocolate has been reported to be good for:
- Your Heart Health by lowering blood pressure
- Your Brain by increasing blood flow to the brain
- Your Blood Sugar because it has a low glycemic index
- Your Mood as it causes your brain to release endorphins which boost mood
- Your Teeth by inhibiting the production of plaque
So I should eat more chocolate for my health?
While we would love to snack away a bag of dark chocolate Lindt truffles (my personal favorite), we know dark chocolate is also full of sugar and fat and lacking a great deal in the area of nutrition. As with any sweet treat, consume dark chocolate in moderation. Experts recommend ~1 ounce per day, which is equal to about six dark chocolate Hershey Kisses. The serving size for my Lindt dark chocolate truffles is three truffles which is a whopping 230 calories!
Your dentist wants you to know that all dark chocolate is not the same. As the health benefit of dark chocolate lies in the cocoa bean, it is recommended to choose dark chocolate containing at least 70 percent cocoa. Lindt Extra Dark Chocolate truffles actually only contain 60 percent cocoa, but Dove's Deepest Dark Chocolate Promises is a better option at 82 percent. Ghirardelli's Midnight Reverie contains 86 percent cocoa and Lindt's Cocoa Supreme Dark 90 percent cocoa. Dark chocolate contains less sugar than other varieties, which can make them a little bitter.
Under most circumstances, your dentists in Fort Lauderdale do not promote candy. The sugar in candy feeds bacteria in your mouth that cause tooth decay. The good news is that dark chocolate is actually good for oral health! Like we said before, the health benefits of dark chocolate is not license for you to eat as much chocolate as you want. No matter how full of antioxidants it is, dark chocolate still is no replacement for your daily oral health habits like brushing, flossing, and your regular dental check-up appointments. However, when selecting a sweet treat, you might consider swapping a few items heavy in processed sugars for dark chocolate Your teeth will thank you!
Nancy Rotroff, DDS, MAGD and Gerard Wasselle, DMD at Excellence in Dentistry provide general, restorative and cosmetic dentistry in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Our patients' health is a our primary goal. Whether you need your dental exam and cleaning, dental fillings, dental veneers, crowns, bridges, or teeth extraction and dental implants, the dentists and staff at Excellence in Dentistry are here to care for your oral health in a welcoming, stress-free office. If you are looking for a dentist nearby, we are located at 2480 E. Commercial Boulevard in Fort Lauderdale.