Archive for December 6th, 2007

Dark Chocolate and Your Heart

December 6, 2007

More and more studies have found new reasons for us to enjoy dark chocoalate this holiday season… or we are just looking for excuses to indulge in one. 

But a new study published in the Journal Circulation in November of 2007 showed the potential mechanism why Dark Chocolate especially the 70% cocoa can be healthy:

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Conclusions— Dark chocolate induces coronary vasodilation, improves coronary vascular function, and decreases platelet adhesion 2 hours after consumption. These immediate beneficial effects were paralleled by a significant reduction of serum oxidative stress and were positively correlated with changes in serum epicatechin concentration.

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The above conclusion points out that indeed dark chocolate can increase blood flow to the heart and more so in patients who are already on medications like ACE inhibitors and Beta blockers. Therefore beneficial to prevent blockage of blood vessel that can lead to heart attack!

But caution to those who will start indulging in Dark chocolate.  Remember the color of the chocolate does not necessarily mean its dark.  It’s the content of the cocoa and more so the content of the flavanol.  This study was done using 70% cocoa.

But before grabbing a chocolate…make sure you are careful not to over do it.  Remember …chocolate is rich in calories and fat! But at least we now have reasons to take a bite before and after a meal without feeling too much guilt!

A Bite of Dark Chocolate for the Holidays!

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