Chocolate and Exercise: a Winning Combination

Experts agree: the combination of chocolate and exercise offers terrific results and improved performance. However, you need to control the portions you consume.
Chocolate and Exercise: a Winning Combination

Last update: 30 November, 2018

Chocolate is rich in high-quality vegetable fats. In addition, in its natural state, it contains no sugars, while providing proteins and minerals. These properties are essential to everyone’s health, and vital to athletic performance. In this article, we’ll take a look at the benefits of combining chocolate and exercise.

A tropical flavor

Chocolate is the primary derivative of cocoa, a seed that originated approximately 5,000 years ago in the Amazon rainforest. There are many different brands available, but they’re not always the best products in terms of quality.

Many of these chocolate products contain high quantities of sugar and other additives, These elements can be quite harmful on their own, but they can also counteract the benefits that chocolate has to offer.

Woman eating chocolate

Benefits

Including chocolate in your diet is a positive thing. One of the most effective ways of consuming it is combining it with nuts, which provides the body with a greater amount of energy. It allows for the optimal absorption of vitamins, minerals, and healthy fats.

Meanwhile, cocoa is high on the list of foods containing valuable antioxidant properties. It’s also rich in vitamin C and fibers, which is why it’s so effective at sating the appetite.

Some specialists consider cocoa to be an important ally in the prevention of cardiovascular diseases. It can also help improve cognitive function and memory. This is especially true for older people, or those showing signs of early-onset dementia.

Chocolate and exercise: improved performance

The darker the chocolate, the better the benefits. Upon entering the body, it provokes the same effects as caffeine, providing enough energy to increase our physical and neurological responses.

While caffeine’s effect is well-known, a cup of coffee won’t stimulate the muscular system the same way that chocolate can.

Liquid chocolate

Dark chocolate provides the body with enough nutrients to endure the most demanding physical activities. Some specialists recommend consuming a small portion just before exercising. The goal is to optimize the work done by the tissues and the circulatory system.

Meanwhile, cocoa can help combat fatigue. This is thanks to its high flavonoid content,  a pigment that protects the body from harmful oxidation.

These benefits have led many high-performance athletes to consume small portions of chocolate during periods of rest, or even during their activities.

Not just any kind

In terms of the excellent results offered by combining chocolate and exercise, we’re not talking about every variety of what is one of the world’s most popular foods. We’re referring exclusively to the dark kind.

Products that combine cocoa and milk, for instance, tend to include very high amounts of sugar and additives, not to mention chemical compounds, such as flavorings.

In any event, chocolate always needs to be consumed in careful moderation. Daily consumption should not exceed 40 grams. Otherwise, it can lead to weight gain, and it will stop being a healthy option.

A well-earned post-workout treat

After a competition or a hard day of exercise, the body needs foods that will help it to recover.

After all, a demanding workout session means the body will use a lot of calories and nutrients. These elements need to be replenished as quickly as possible.

Not only does chocolate provide a high quantity and variety of the components you need for replenishment it also helps you recover from the psychological fatigue that comes with submitting your muscles, bones, joints, and brain to high levels of stress.

In this sense, perhaps the most important aspect is that its pleasant flavor brings with it an unmatched feeling of comfort. It’s an unmistakable signal that the goals of the physical workout were met or exceeded.

This cocoa derivative is definitely a fitting reward after giving your all. It’s another great reason to combine chocolate and exercise.

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Dark Chocolate: What Are Its Health Benefits?

Dark chocolate can be beneficial to your heart, brain, and nervous system. Read this article to learn more about its health benefits.