There has been much talk that dark chocolate is "healthy." While many of us would love to believe  that chocolate is good for us, it's not the whole truth. Much like any candy, chocolate can lead to weight gain due to its high caloric content. However, there are incredible health benefits that can make up for it.

Dark chocolate is said to lower blood pressure and be a great source of antioxidants

But what the heck is an antioxidant? Antioxidants remove potentially damaging agents in the body that cause cell damage (aka they rock).

In one study, it was shown that dark chocolate's ability to remove these damaging agents was more than that of blueberries and açaí berries. Not saying dark chocolate should replace your daily fruit intake, but hey, there's nothing wrong with a blueberry-chocolate combo either.

Rachel Tison

Also, dark chocolate has sun-protecting properties. The antioxidants have been said to protect skin from sun damage, while increasing skin hydration and decreasing the likelihood of skin cancer and sunburn. 

Next time you go tanning, bring along a square of chocolate or two. If I had known this before, I would care much less about my frequent chocolate binge-eating.

salt, beer, coffee, tea
Rachel Tison

In fact, eating dark chocolate for 12 weeks before sun exposure increases UV protection, as well as reducing moisture loss in skin. What are you waiting for? Say goodbye to SPF 50 and head to the beach ASAP.

While dark chocolate has been linked to many health benefits, that does not mean you should make your own "I Ate Dark Chocolate for Four Weeks and This is What Happened" diet. Chocolate, regardless of its type, is still high in calories and fat, and is considered a sweet treat. That's a stomach ache waiting to happen.