Good news! Eating a small amount of dark chocolate can be good for your health. Chocolate comes from a plant — the bean of the cacao tree — and like certain teas, wine and many fruits and vegetables, it boasts a high concentration of antioxidant compounds called “flavonoids,” which can help prevent heart disease and protect against cancer.
To get the maximum health benefit it’s best to consume minimally processed chocolate in pure, dark form without additives (like corn syrup, hydrogenated oil and artificial colors or flavors). Look for a cacao (or cocoa) content of 70 percent and be sure to watch the portion size. Although brands vary, you can assume that a one- to one-and-a-half-ounce serving of plain dark chocolate contains about 200 calories. Read on to discover the 12 top brands for clean and healthy chocolate.