Chocolate is one snack that we all get to enjoy when we get nostalgic, make a successful pitch, or after a long day. However, it also has other positive attributes, particularly with regards to our health. Osteoarthritis is a form of arthritis defined by the disintegration of the cartilage between the joints. It is considered the most prevalent joint malfunction, with over 240 million individuals affected globally. When the joints are exposed to any form of strain, the affected joins will become stiff and painful. Osteoarthritis mainly affects the joints in the hips, spine, hands, and knees.
How does Chocolate help?
Chocolate is derived from the “Theobroma Cacoa Tree.” The seeds; cocoa beans are used to make cocoa butter, solids, and chocolates. Chocolate aids in managing the condition via the cocoa powder, which has phytochemicals that help reduce the inflammations. So, what are phytochemicals? They are chemicals that plants use to protect themselves from diseases. Research indicates that the same chemicals found in plants are equally beneficial to human beings. The consumption of phytochemicals reduces the intensity of the symptoms linked to osteoarthritis.
Additionally, chocolates have a high concentration of flavonoids derived from the cocoa beans. It exists naturally in vegetables, fruits, red wine, and tea. Cocoa contains Flavanols, flavonoids, and flavonols; the primary type of flavonoid in chocolate and cocoa, which have anti-inflammatory and anti-allergic impacts. The flavonoid content may not be evident on the labels. In this case, individuals with the osteoarthritis symptoms should check the percentage of cocoa solids.
What kind of Chocolate is best suited for Osteoarthritis?
We cannot underestimate the love for chocolate since we all find any reason to enjoy a bar of chocolate. However, individuals suffering from Osteoarthritis need to focus on their consumption levels. This is because moderation makes all the difference in mitigating osteoarthritis. It would be best if you ate chocolate with more than 70% of cocoa to function effectively. The higher the cocoa levels, the lower the sugar content in the chocolate. Notably, dark chocolate is the recommended chocolate for those who have osteoarthritis. This is because it contains approximately 50-90% of cocoa butter and solids. It has 2-3 times more flavanol compared to white chocolate. Also, black chocolate is rich in copper, magnesium, zinc, iron, and phosphorus. The objective is to manage the portions and limit the calories and saturated fats.