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Benefits of Dark Chocolate for Seniors

Pieces of dark chocolate with mint on wooden table

Dark chocolate is loaded with nutrients that can positively impact your health. Made from the seed of the cocoa tree, it is one of the best sources of antioxidants on the planet.

Studies show that dark chocolate (not the sugary kind) can improve your health and lower the risk of heart disease. Of course, it depends on the quality of the chocolate you buy — if it is high-quality dark chocolate then it definitely is nutritious, containing a decent amount of soluble fiber and minerals.

Dark chocolate can play the following roles for you and your health:

  1. It is a powerful source of antioxidants
  2. It may improve blood flow and lower blood pressure
  3. Raises HDL and protects LDL from Oxidation
  4. May reduce your risks of heart disease
  5. Lastly, improve brain function

There is considerable evidence that can support how powerful cocoa can be for our health being especially protective against heart disease. Of course, this does not mean you should go all out and consume lots of it every day. Too much of a good thing is bad. Chocolate is still loaded with calories and it can be easy to overeat.

A sizeable amount — maybe one square or two after dinner — is enough chocolate to last you the day. Try to savor it for as long as you can! If you want the benefits of cocoa without the calories, consider making a hot cup of cocoa and skipping the sugar or cream.

You can shop for dark chocolate at local grocers or online.

Senior Eye-Health Month

Close-up of an optometrist doing sight testing for senior patient

It’s normal for our vision to change as we get older. With proper eye-care, we can manage the way these changes affect our lives and the way we live it. You might just need new glasses, contact lenses, or better lighting in your house.

To make sure, it is important that you get an annual exam with your doctor to know if you are experiencing any symptoms and signs of the following eye-related conditions:
Skin Conditions Typical of the Senior Population

  1. Presbyopia – when your eyes start having trouble focusing on objects that are close up; they may also entail headaches due to eye-strain
  2. Cataracts – entails blurry, cloudy, or dim vision; at earlier stages, simply changing your eyeglass or contact lens prescription is all you need
  3. Floaters – these are shadows of vitreous, which is the gel-like substance that makes the eye round, cast on the retina; they can appear as spots, threadlike strands, or squiggly lines that drift around, even when your eye stops moving
  4. Dry eyes – this can happen at any age, but are more common in people older than 65; this condition can also be an after-effect of hormonal changes that take place in the body as we age

Apart from the changes in the quality of your eyesight, there are other physical changes that may simultaneously occur. Pupils get smaller and may not open as wide as they did before. Eyelids may also droop and become inflamed.

You can get advice from your home care provider about the steps you can take in preserving your eyesight.