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Dark Chocolate May Sweeten The Way To Health


New Member
Nov 10, 2004
If it tastes good it must be bad, so the saying goes, but delicious dark chocolate may be the exception to the rule.

In addition to all the pleasurable sensations associated with the sweet, it may also help lower blood pressure by an average of 10 percent while improving the body's sensitivity to insulin, researchers report.

However, this benefit applies only to dark chocolate, which is rich in flavonoids -- the same antioxidant compounds found in fruits, vegetables and whole grains that are known to help lower blood pressure, according to the report in the July 18 online edition of Hypertension.

"It turns out that chocolate is not only a pleasurable food, but it fits in quite nicely with the other healthy recommendations," said coauthor Jeffrey B. Blumberg, a professor of nutrition and a senior scientist at the Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University. "We found that three ounces of dark chocolate per day over several weeks reduced blood pressure in patients with essential hypertension and also seemed to provide a benefit on their insulin sensitivity," he added.

In their study, Blumberg's team had 10 men and 10 women eat 3.5 ounces of dark chocolate every day for 15 days. All of these people had high blood pressure and none were taking blood pressure medications.

First, the researchers had five of the men and five of the women eat dark chocolate while the others ate white chocolate, which contains no flavonoids. Then after another week of no chocolate, the groups "crossed over" and ate the other chocolate.

In the 15 days they were eating dark chocolate, individuals displayed an average 11.9 mm Hg drop in their systolic blood pressure (the top number in a blood pressure reading) and a 8.5 mm Hg drop in diastolic blood pressure (the lower number). However, there was no drop in blood pressure when they ate flavonoid-free white chocolate, the researchers found.

Given these results, Blumberg believes that dark chocolate can be good for you. "Dark chocolate can be included as part of a healthful diet in patients who have hypertension," he said.

Link.... http://www.forbes.com/lifestyle/health/fee...cout526855.html
It's a pity it wasn't all sorts of chocolate
. Still even if it's just dark chocolate......