Chocolate has been in the news a lot recently. Many new studies have come out about the health benefits of the sweet treat.
Love is often what brings customers to chocolate shops, like the Chocolate Lab in Bethlehem.
Sydney Hall from Virginia was perusing the chocolate selection there and says he loves chocolate. When asked if he knew how healthy chocolate was for you, he responded, "That's what I'm told," but followed up by saying that isn't why he eats it. Hall said, "I eat it because I like it."
Many with a sweet tooth may not realize that chocolate might be even better for you than first thought.
Recent studies show chocolate boosts your brain power, reduces the risk of stroke, and more.
Doctors say it all boils down to one thing: flavanoids.
Dr. Jeffrey Veluz, a cardiac surgeon with St. Luke's, explained, "It appears that the flavanoids may cause our body to release more nitric oxide, which can be beneficial in many ways-- one of which is lowering the blood pressure."
The benefits don’t stop there he said. He went on to say, "It decreases oxidation. It decreases inflammation. It makes our blood vessels work better."
These studies, unfortunately for chocolate lovers, don't mean you can eat endless amounts of the sweet stuff.
Dr. Veluz explained, "I think moderation is the key. Pay attention to the fat and sugar content of chocolate." He suggests 50 grams a week, which is about one regular six-ounce candy bar.
When it comes to the color of the chocolate, Dr. Veluz said, "We think the darker the better, because it has a higher concentration of these flavanoids."
So whether or not chocolate shop customers are there for the health benefits, Steve Parisi said, "I just come here for the sugar," the healthy benefits certainly don't hurt.
Chocolate lover Victoria Gonzalez said, "If it tastes good and it does good things for you, then why not, right?"