Posts Tagged ‘Plant Sterols’

Dark Chocolate Can Lower Blood Pressure and Cholesterol…

June 17, 2008

Another interesting research and great news for chocolate lovers. 

A new study published in the Journal of Nutrition has shown a beneficial effects of dark chocolate in reducing cholesterol and blood pressure.

________________________________________________________________________________________

This double-blind, placebo-controlled, cross-over study evaluated the efficacy of daily consumption of a cocoa flavanol-containing dark chocolate bar with added PS on serum lipids, blood pressure, and other circulating cardiovascular health markers in a population with elevated serum cholesterol.

Regular consumption of the PS-containing chocolate bar resulted in reductions of 2.0 and 5.3% in serum total and LDL cholesterol (P < 0.05), respectively. Consumption of CF also reduced systolic blood pressure at 8 wk (-5.8 mm Hg; P < 0.05).

Results indicate that regular consumption of chocolate bars containing PS and CF as part of a low-fat diet may support cardiovascular health by lowering cholesterol and improving blood pressure.

________________________________________________________________________________________

In this study the participants utilized the AHA style diet, and were instructed to consume 2 cocoa flavanol-containing dark chocolate bars per day with (1.1 g sterol esters per bar) or without PS.  The participants really had fun because they were asked to consume 1 bar 2 times per day for 4 wk then switched to the other bar for an additional 4 wk. How I wished I can be part of a study like this!!!!

The research is again one of the many studies done so far on dark chocolate that provides intriguing information regarding the role of plant sterols (PS) and cocoa flavanols (CF) in maintaining cardiovascular health.

Remember though, these are dark chocolates supplemented with plant sterols in addition to cocoa flavanols. These are available in both CVS and Walgreens Pharmacy Stores in the US.  Meaning these dark chocolates are not the usual regular dark chocolates available anywhere. 

So Dark Chocolate…Anyone? 

Advertisements