Chocolate might taste sinfully sweet, but there’s absolutely nothing wrong with indulging in this dessert food. In fact, eating dark chocolate especially could be really good for you — it has surprising health benefits, including everything from cancer prevention to better eyesight.
Most of these benefits come exclusively from cocoa, meaning that the darker the chocolate, the healthier it will be. Popular chocolate candies, like the kinds you always hoped for while trick-or-treating, are often made of less actual chocolate and more added milk and sugar. These foods, while definitely delicious, unfortunately don’t have the same benefits.
There are dark chocolate bars out there, though, that have much less added sugar and other ingredients. They often list the percentage of cocoa used in their production — the higher the percentage, the darker the chocolate.
Eating a few squares of dark chocolate in the middle of a long day can go a long way, and not just because chocolate tastes so good. The healthful compounds in dark chocolate can improve many aspects of your mental and physical health. So if you can’t resist dark chocolate’s temptation, here are 20 health reasons you really don’t have to.