Recent studies have show that there are several health benefits related to consuming dark chocolate due to flavonoids. Eating a couple of squares of dark chocolate can reduce the risk of heart attack, lower blood pressure, decrease LDL (bad cholesterol) and act as an anti-inflammatory. But not all chocolate is created equal. The more nonfat cocoa, the better. The highest levels of antioxidants can be found in natural cocoa powder, the second highest in flavonoids is unsweetened baking chocolate. Dark chocolate and semisweet chocolate chips come in third, milk chocolate last.
Three tablespoons of cocoa have 60 calories and 1.5 grams of fat. Unsweetened baking chocolate, one square, has 140 calories and 14 grams of fat. A serving of milk chocolate has 270 calories and 17 grams of fat. So although there are health benefits of eating chocolate due to their flavonoids, too much chocolate can be bad because it also contains fat and sugar. Too many calories can lead to weight gain. Look for at least 70-percent cocoa and treat your self to one square a day.