Dark Chocolate During Pregnancy (Is It Safe For Mom and Baby?)
Pregnant women have a lot of sudden cravings. They will crave sweets or often sour things such as pickles. Often it has been said that pregnant women take advantage of their cravings and start overeating sweets and even chocolates.
Well, the point is that chocolate is not bad at all. It can even have positive effects on the mother as well as the baby. A lot of questions have been asked regarding eating dark chocolate during pregnancy. So to know more about the consumption of dark chocolate for pregnancy, follow this article till the end and know better.
Benefits of dark chocolate during pregnancy
As you know, dark chocolate has more caffeine than ordinary milk chocolates. So it is better to calculate your caffeine intake and consumption of dark chocolates during pregnancy.
Dark chocolate, on the other hand, is known to be very decadent and very tasty. Pregnant women love to feed on dark chocolates. There are many reasons why pregnant women should go for dark chocolates while on their special days of pregnancy.
- Dark chocolate is considered to be a superfood that you need while you are pregnant.
- Dark chocolate has a lot of theobromine in it, which is responsible for helping to relax the muscles and also to dilate the blood vessels.
- The chemical in dark chocolate can stimulate the heart and provide an additional boost to the body.
- It is good to consume dark chocolate while pregnant because it helps improve pregnant women’s immune system, which is highly needed, especially during pregnancy.
- The flavonoids present in dark chocolate help in the process of aiding the cardiovascular system of pregnant women. Besides all these amazing facts, dark chocolate also contains a good amount of iron, magnesium, and other nutrients beneficial for the body.
Do not forget that dark chocolate has serotonin, a great antidepressant that can easily change your mood when you feel low and moody. And last but not least, another great and vital benefit of dark chocolate is its very low in fat and sugar.
Remember that you should avoid gaining too much-unwanted weight as it can lead to issues for yourself and your baby later.
Does Dark Chocolate During Pregnancy Relieve Pre-Eclampsia in Women?
As we know, pre-eclampsia is one of the causes of women giving birth to a premature baby. It is a situation characterized by nothing but high blood pressure and protein level that is present in woman’s urine while she is pregnant.
In cases where the blood pressure increases, it certainly leads to a convulsion that can even cause issues such as blood clotting as well as damage to the liver of the women.
In this regard, according to some research, the consumption of dark chocolate during pregnancy is considered very effective in preventing pre-eclampsia, mainly when pregnant women are in the trimester.
Dark Chocolates During Pregnancy Gives Happier Babies
According to the research found in the scientists’ magazine, it has been stated that pregnant women consumed more dark chocolate than those who didn’t give birth to happy babies.
Mothers with dark chocolate frequently said they had given birth to a happier baby.
The exact reason behind this finding is unknown, but it can be due to many reasons. It can be due to dark chocolate’s health benefits, or it can be due to the passing of chocolate right through the placenta into the milk that the babies are fed.
Another finding was regarding the stress level. It has been found that those pregnant women who consumed dark chocolate had less stress than those who didn’t.
So you see, dark chocolate is, in fact, a savior. While women are pregnant, there is a need to ease the mood and relieve the stress. Why go for stress-free medicines when you can easily consume dark chocolate and eliminate unwanted stress?
The good news is that since dark chocolate contains theobromine, it has the potential to help women to regulate their blood pressure. It simply dilates the blood vessels. Apart from being yummy, dark chocolates do have medicinal value as well.
If you hear your doctor telling you that you need iron and magnesium while pregnant, do not panic. Add dark chocolate to your daily routine in a moderate amount.
It is a fact that dark chocolate has about 67% iron and 58% magnesium, which is highly needed by your body, especially during pregnancy. Iron, as we know, is essential for pregnant women to maintain their hemoglobin level, especially during pregnancy. In contrast, magnesium helps greatly increase the metabolism of the fatty acids present in the stomach.
Also Read: Eating Jackfruit During Pregnancy
The Difference Between a Dark Chocolate and A Milk Chocolate
Looking at the differences between these two types of yummy chocolates, we can easily guess why pregnant women crave dark chocolate during pregnancy more.
- Dark chocolate has more cocoa content as compared to milk chocolate.
- You can pair dark chocolate easily with other flavors and still taste awesome.
- Dark chocolates do have denser, and they are deeper in their chocolate flavor.
Getting back to the milk chocolate, we can say that:
- As its name suggests, it is made with milk, and some may not love the taste of milk chocolate due to the presence of milk.
- It does not have the crunchy and dry texture we love in dark chocolates.
- It pairs with sweets and other flavors.
Looking at these two chocolate options, it is obvious that a true chocolate lover will anytime choose dark chocolate, especially if she is pregnant.
Also Read: Nettle Tea in Pregnancy
Can I eat dark chocolate every trimester?
Consuming dark chocolate during pregnancy first trimester and second trimester is considered safe if taken in moderation; however, eating dark chocolate during pregnancy third trimester is not recommended due to its possible dangers.
Pregnants should avoid foods containing polyphenols in the 3rd trimester as they may negatively impact the baby’s ductus arteriosus. The same goes for eating dark chocolate during the third trimester since it contains polyphenols and may cause fetal ductus arteriosus constriction, resulting in circulating too much blood in the baby’s heart and lungs. It is advisable not to eat dark chocolate late in pregnancy.
How much dark chocolate is safe during pregnancy?
How much chocolate you can safely consume during pregnancy depends on your daily sugar and caffeine intake. But generally, it is okay to have 20g of dark chocolate for pregnant per day. It woulfd help if you considered dark chocolate caffeine during pregnancy as this chocolate has more caffeine than other chocolates.
You should limit your daily caffeine intake to no more than 200 mg; therefore, you should not overeat dark chocolate in pregnancy. Check the amount of dark chocolate you can eat while pregnant with your doctor. Your doctor determines the safe amount of chocolate based on the caffeine amount you get from other sources like tea.
Side effects of chocolate during pregnancy
Well, we have spoken about the advantages and health benefits of dark chocolates during pregnancy so far. But you should also maintain the amount you consume.
Overeating chocolate, irrespective of its type, should be stopped. Ensure you do not cross your daily caffeine intake by consuming too many dark chocolates. Based on research, it has been stated that if you consume more than 200 mg of caffeine per day, there can be chances of miscarriage in pregnant women.
When you consume chocolates, especially dark chocolates, make sure you do not mix them with tea or coffee as it can result in the caffeine level exceeding in your body. Make sure you consume the recommended amount.
Stay away from chocolate mousse during pregnancy as it is unhealthy for your baby’s health first. Go for chocolates that have organic sugar in them. Organic chocolates are a great option hence.
It is still not known precisely what is the reason behind the craving for chocolates in pregnant women. Still, whatever the reason may be, it is a good cause.
It has been said that during pregnancy, women tend to have deficiencies of antioxidants and magnesium, which found in chocolates in a good amounts. So this can be a reason that pregnant women crave chocolates a lot.
Conversely, women crave chocolates mainly because chocolates positively affect the brain and make an individual happy. It is a mood booster as well. Hormonal changes result in pregnant women crave for chocolates, especially dark chocolate.
Now you know the positive sides to the consumption of dark chocolate during pregnancy.
Do not hesitate to feed on chocolate while craving it, but as mentioned earlier, keep the limit, as everything in the limit is good. Once you exceed the limit, it can have negative impacts.