Some of the most visible signs of the aging process can be seen in our skin. Exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation ages the skin more quickly. But did you know that eating (or drinking) dark chocolate has been shown to help protect the skin against the harmful effects of UV exposure?
Cocoa beans, from which chocolate is made, have a higher antioxidant capacity than any other food, and the high concentration of antioxidant flavanols in cocoa beans helps reduce inflammation of the skin caused by exposure to UV light. Furthermore, eating dark chocolate can increase circulation in the skin and improve its ability to retain moisture, which can reduce the appearance of wrinkles and help you look younger [source: Williams].
But not all chocolate is equal when it comes to anti-aging -- it's dark chocolate that provides the greatest benefits. That's because the refining process involved in making other kinds of chocolate actually strips away most of the skin-benefitting antioxidant flavanols.