Eat More Chocolate!

The Power of Dark Chocolate

Eating dark chocolate improves heart health, increases insulin sensitivity, and has anti-inflammatory properties.  Researchers have documented these benefits and are now exploring why these effects occur.

Eat more chocolate

Research participants ate between 8-20 grams of dark chocolate daily.  That is equal to two small squares.  It's important to remember that the research being performed is being conducted on dark chocolate, not milk chocolate, and that the chocolate has been only slightly sweetened.  Milk chocolate has a higher sugar content and will not confer the same health benefits.

Gut bacteria In the large intestine breaks down the fiber and the antioxidants in the chocolate and converts them into chemicals called flavanols.  These flavanols are absorbed in the blood stream where they reduce inflammation and improve circulation, both of which improve our overall cardiovascular health.

Researchers discovered that people eating 8 grams of dark chocolate daily, one small square, had an obvious improvement in cardiovascular function and a 14% - 23% increase in arterial flow.  Increased arterial flow is associated with a decrease in cardiovascular risk.

Enjoy a small piece of high quality chocolate everyday.  Its good for you!

Electrolytes For Health and Fitness

Electrolytes for health and fitness

Physiologically speaking, electrolytes are ions of sodium, potassium, calcium, magnesium, chloride, hydrogen phosphate and hydrogen carbonate.  They are all essential to the proper functioning of our bodies.  Sodium is especially important and is involved in fluid balance and blood pressure regulation.  Muscles and nerves are electric tissues.  These tissues are regulated by the activity created by having different electrolyte balances inside and outside of our cells. In order for our cells to function properly a delicate balance of electrolytes needs to be maintained.  For instance muscle contractions depend upon calcium, sodium and potassium.  If these minerals are depleted it could lead to muscle weakness, fatigue and cramping.  In recent years, companies like Pepsi and Coca Cola have paid millions in advertising campaigns to get us to believe that all athletes need to drink their sport drinks in order to maintain proper hydration and electrolyte balance.  It’s just not true!

There are many fruits and vegetables, which can supply our bodies with all the nutrition they need to perform optimally, maintain proper hydration and replenish all electrolytes.  By making our own electrolyte drinks we can avoid the refined sugars, brominated vegetable oils, and chemical colorants in these “sports drinks.”