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Top 10 Health Benefits of Hot Chocolate, Plus a Delicious Recipe

Hot Chocolate Day

Are you looking for a beverage for a cozy movie night? Or are you homesick? Do you want to sip on something delicious and healthy?  Don’t worry as your favourite childhood saviour and one of the best comfy foods comes to the rescue. Especially in winter, nothing is better than holding a cup of smoking hot chocolate and warming up your hands and if you ask me, it works better than a heater! LOL! Oh BTW! Do you know January 31st is celebrated as the official Hot Chocolate Day by hot chocolate enthusiasts all over the World?

Fun Fact: It is believed that hot chocolate was first made by Mayan people about 2,000 years ago and had medicinal properties!! 

Even though hot chocolate is different from hot cocoa, this recipe gives you the best of both worlds!!! Let’s just dig into it:

Take 1 ½ Cup of milk in a saucepan and add 1 cinnamon stick and 1 TBSP sugar to it. Once the sugar Is dissolved, add 2 TBSP of cocoa powder and 1 Cup of Chocolate (of your choice) to it and let it melt completely on a low flame. Stir continuously. After a few minutes, add the cornstarch slurry (1 Tsp of Cornstarch mixed with 1 -2 TBSP of cold milk) and increase the flame. Lastly, add a pinch of salt. Top it up with Marshmallows, Whipped Cream, Sprinklers, Chocolate Twigs, Ice-cream, or whatever you like it with, and Yay! Your smooth, glossy, thick, and mouth-watering hot chocolate is ready to serve. Enjoy !! 

10 Hidden Benefits of Hot Chocolate

Peaceful woman in warm sweater drinking hot chocolate, enjoy stress free peaceful mood at home.
Peaceful woman in drinking hot chocolate at home.

1. Improves Skin

While it’s true that some people with dairy sensitivity may get pimples after drinking milk, you should also be aware that milk is fortified with vitamin D and is rich in vitamin A, both of which are excellent for the skin. Another item that is sometimes disregarded as being bad for skin care, chocolate, actually includes a ton of flavonoids, which are proven to have numerous positive effects on skin.

2. Triggers Brain Activity

The more efficiently the brain functions, the more tightly controlled its blood supply is. The hot chocolate may be a great tonic for healing mental illnesses. Major flavanols found in chocolate, including epicatechin and catechin, are quite effective at reawakening the brain. Additionally, these flavonoids increase blood flow to the brain and supply oxygen to its vital regions so they can function actively. This makes dementia a serious condition brought on by decreased blood supply to the brain, which causes a loss in mental function. In this way, consuming cocoa not only aids in the treatment of dementia but also delays the onset of all neurodegenerative diseases. 

3. Anti-Cancer Agent

The ability of hot chocolate to fight cancer is another important application. Flavanols, one important family of flavonoids, are added to hot chocolate and are used to treat cancer. These flavanols have an anti-inflammatory impact as a result of their antioxidant property. Additionally, these antioxidants lessen oxidative stress by scavenging the body’s free radicals, which might result in cancer or moderate inflammation.  It has been established that flavanols collaborate with other cocoa components, like procyanidins, to act as chemopreventive and anti-proliferative agents, which are utilized to treat colorectal and prostate cancer. 

4. Regulates Blood Circulation

It has been established that flavonoids, which are naturally occurring polyphenolic chemicals, are abundant in cocoa. These substances’ medicinal character is aided by their anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, anti-proliferative, anti-aggregating, and several other properties. Nitric oxide (NO) availability in healthy persons is balanced by hot chocolate because it contains flavanols. Consuming cocoa increases the bioavailability of NO, which is responsible for vasodilation and improves blood flow in hypertension individuals. 

5. Prevents Type-2 Diabetes

Patients with type 2 diabetes become less responsive to insulin. Due to inadequate insulin synthesis, blood glucose levels rise. A hormone called insulin is created in this case by beta cells in the pancreas. It controls the amount of glucose in the blood. Additionally, it maintains glucose levels in a healthy range that is neither too high nor too low to prevent the synthesis of ATP or harm body cells.

The dysfunction of the beta cells, which regulate insulin production, is shown by the truncated insulin output. Given that beta cells are vulnerable to oxidative stress, flavonoids’ anti-oxidant properties would be useful in addressing beta cell dysfunction. The finest selection honor goes to the flavanol catechin. Because beta cells’ mitochondria are strengthened by catechin, they produce more ATP, which raises blood pressure. 

6. Anti-depressant

Unexpectedly, hot cocoa is used as an antidepressant. You can feel better by drinking a prescribed amount of hot chocolate since serotonin, a neurotransmitter that functions as an anti-depressant, is present in chocolate. A natural painkiller and pleasure hormone, endorphins are also produced as a result of it.

7. Helps in Weight Loss

Yes, drinking hot chocolate aids with weight loss. But let’s be clear that hot chocolate and packaged sweat chocolate are two distinct things before diving into a bowl of chocolate. In addition, people frequently mix together hot chocolate and sweat chocolate. A bar of chocolate without sugar and cocoa butter is known as hot chocolate or cocoa. This goodie has few calories. You can therefore consume chocolate while on a diet as long as you don’t go over the moderate limit. 

8. Good for Heart

As was previously mentioned, cocoa is rich in polyphenolic components like procyanidin, catechin, epicatechin, and magnesium (Mg), all of which interact to improve heart health. Hot chocolate also modulates blood flow throughout the body. The polyphenols also stop blood clots from forming in blood arteries and platelet mixing. The primary causes of cardiovascular illnesses are the development of blood clots and plaque. Additionally, polyphenolic chemicals provide the arteries flexibility and broaden them, while magnesium fortifies the heart. Overall, it reduces the possibility of suspected heart failure.

9. PMS Relief

It’s not like you’ve ever needed encouragement to drink a huge cup of hot chocolate when you have PMS, but now you know you’re doing it for a good reason because milk and chocolate have both been proven to relieve symptoms of depression.

10. Good for Coughs and Colds

When you’re sick, you might crave chocolate since one of its components, theobromine, can actually lessen your coughing. Although some studies refute the idea that dairy can cause phlegm, which is bad when you’re sick, you may have heard that.

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Aayushi Chopra
Aayushi Chopra
Aayushi Chopra is a law student who is interested in creating content on education, lifestyle, law, health, and environment. She enjoys researching different topics and then expressing her views on them.

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