The toughest part about New Year’s resolutions?
Actually keeping them.
Fortunately, there’s hope! A phenomenon known as temptation bundling suggests that pairing one activity that you enjoy with one that you avoid can actually help solidify a habit.
What better way to achieve your New Year’s resolution this year than by pairing it with a piece of chocolate?
Everyone can agree that chocolate tastes delicious, but you may not realize that it’s packed with a generous amount of health benefits, too.
Dark chocolate in particular can benefit much more than just your tastebuds, due to its high flavonoid content. Flavonoids are antioxidant-rich compounds that help blood flow through your veins and arteries by reducing inflammation.
This year, as you weigh different New Year’s resolutions against one another, choose one that you can commit to and feel great about.
New Year’s Resolution #1: Stick to your diet
While this sounds counter-intuitive, it’s true!
A University of Copenhagen study found that dark chocolate is more filling than milk chocolate, and can reduce cravings for salty or fatty foods that are bad for you. The same researchers found that even just smelling dark chocolate can reduce appetite levels. Chocolate candles, anyone?
New Year’s Resolution #2: Promote a healthy heart
Harvard University reported that eating more chocolate correlates with a lower risk of cardiovascular disease. The lowered blood pressure from flavonoid consumption helps lessen your risk for heart failure.
To enjoy similar health benefits, you can happily snack on a square of dark chocolate a day. Combine that with a regular exercise routine and you’ll be well on your way to a healthy heart.
New Year’s Resolution #3: Reduce your stress levels
It’s scientifically proven: chocolate simply makes you feel good. Chocolate contains phenylethylamine, the same chemical your brain releases when you’re falling in love. This explains that happy feeling you get when you enjoy a piece of delicious chocolate.
Plus, multiple studies have shown that people who enjoy a small amount of dark chocolate (an ounce or so) in their daily diets have lower levels of anxiety and a better sense of overall calmness.
New Year’s Resolution #4: Be kinder on your skin
In addition to moisturizing and wearing sunscreen regularly, consider incorporating chocolate into your daily skincare routine. The same flavonoids found in dark chocolate responsible for increasing blood flow also help lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels. As a result, eating antioxidant-rich chocolate makes your skin feel smoother, healthier, and more resistant to sunburn.
Indulge in dark chocolate; your skin will thank you for it!
New Year’s resolutions and chocolate: a perfect pair
Devote 2017 to a happier, healthier you.