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Thursday, July 21, 2005

Dark Chocolate is Pure Sweetness

2 New Reasons to Love Dark Chocolate

In the study, which appears in the March issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, researchers compared the effects of adding 100 grams (3.5 ounces) of dark chocolate or 90 grams (3.2 ounces) of white chocolate to the normal diets of 15 healthy Italians. Dark chocolate is rich in flavonoids due to their high cocoa content, but white chocolate contains no cocoa, and, therefore, no flavonoids.

The participants ate a daily dose of dark chocolate for 15 days, followed by a seven-day no-chocolate phase, and then ate the white chocolate for another 15 days. Researchers found that blood sugar metabolism was significantly improved after the dark chocolate phase, as evidenced by reduced insulin resistance and higher insulin sensitivity. But no such healthy effects were found after the white chocolate phase. The study also showed that the participants' systolic blood pressure (the top number in a blood pressure reading) was significantly lower after 15 days of eating dark chocolate -- an average of 108 mm Hg compared with 114 mm Hg. Again, no effects were found after eating white chocolate. Other studies have shown similar effects with other flavonoid-containing foods, such as tea and wine, on blood pressure. Researchers say the antioxidant-rich compounds improve blood pressure by helping the lining of the blood vessels expand and contract better to control blood flow more effectively. In an editorial that accompanies the study, Cesar G. Fraga, of the department of nutrition at the University of California, Davis, says "the findings of this study are of particular interest in terms of identifying potentially healthy foods."
He says other studies with flavonoid-containing foods, such as tea and wine, have shown similar effects on vascular and blood pressure regulation.


SOURCE: Grassi, D. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, March 2005; vol 81: pp 611-614.

3 Comments:

At 7/21/2005 3:55 PM, Blogger MOL Junior said...

dark chocolate is all the rage in my mouth these days. plus i've also heard that it has a ton of anti-oxidants.

 
At 7/26/2005 6:18 PM, Anonymous yaycoffee said...

WooHoo! Chocolate is good for you--proven by yet ANOTHER study! Lupin would be pleased. ;-)

 
At 7/31/2005 6:16 PM, Anonymous Audrey said...

I am sooooo excited about this chocolate study. I actually saw the report on the today show too. I am also very happy that wine is supposed to be good for you too. I should be really healthy.

 

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