Navigation Links
Dark Chocolate May Harbor Benefits for the Heart
Date:3/24/2011

THURSDAY, March 24 (HealthDay News) -- If you can handle the fat and calories, there may be a health benefit to enjoying dark chocolate on occasion. New research suggests that the cocoa ingredient may lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels while preventing diabetes and improving the health of blood vessels.

So why not chow down on a candy bar or two every day? Here's the rub: Scientists aren't sure whether the downsides of cocoa consumption -- such as potential obesity -- could outweigh the benefits.

The research relied on mostly sugar-free dark chocolate, not the kind of chocolate normally found on the candy shelves. Participants who ate the chocolate, which contained cocoa rich in substances known as polyphenolic flavonoids, did better in several areas, including blood pressure. Levels of bad cholesterol went down in those younger than 50, and levels of good cholesterol went up.

The findings, which came from an analysis of data from 21 high-quality studies that included a total of 2,575 participants, were scheduled for presentation Wednesday at an American Heart Association conference in Atlanta. Experts note that research presented at meetings should be considered preliminary because it has not been subjected to the rigorous scrutiny given to research published in medical journals.

It remains unclear, the researchers said, as to just why chocolate appears to have the effect that they found. It's also not known how much people would need to eat to get the benefits.

Then there's the cocoa itself, another possible complication.

"The research looks at the benefits of cocoa and used a very specifically prepared cocoa," said Lona Sandon, assistant professor of clinical nutrition at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas. "Cocoa is an ingredient of chocolate. How the cocoa is processed makes a difference in whether or not the chocolate drink or bar it is contained in will have health benefits."

"In other words, not all chocolate or cocoa is created equal," she said.

Though chocolate in moderation may be fine for many people, Sandon said, there are better and healthier ways to boost heart health.

"Weight loss is king when it comes to preventing high blood pressure and improving insulin resistance," she said. "I do not see cocoa having the power to overcome poor health habits."

However, she said, there are ways to add cocoa to the diet that may keep fat and calories under control -- such as drinking hot cocoa with skim milk, adding dark cocoa powder to the top of a cappuccino and using cocoa powder in recipes.

More information

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has information on heart disease.

-- Randy Dotinga

SOURCES: Lona Sandon, R.D., assistant professor, clinical nutrition, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas; presentation, March 23, 2011, American Heart Association Nutrition, Physical Activity and Metabolism Conference 2011 and 51st Cardiovascular Disease Epidemiology and Prevention Annual Conference, Atlanta.


'/>"/>
Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. New explanation for heart-healthy benefits of chocolate
2. Confectionery and chocolate engineering: Principles and applications
3. Moderate chocolate consumption linked to lower risks of heart failure
4. Small Amounts of Dark Chocolate May Guard Against Heart Failure
5. Many Patients Say No to Chocolate As Medicine
6. eMindful Provides a New Twist on Chocolate for Members of Boston's Beacon Hill Village
7. Ingredient in Dark Chocolate Could Guard Against Stroke
8. Super Fat-Melting Chocolate Recipe Revealed
9. How dark chocolate may guard against brain injury from stroke
10. Chocolate a Sweet Pick-Me-Up for the Depressed
11. A Little Chocolate May Do the Heart Good
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Dark Chocolate May Harbor Benefits for the Heart
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... Dr. ... from injury. Recently, he has implemented orthobiologic procedures as a method for treating ... one of the first doctors to perform the treatment. Orthobiologics are substances that ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... Angeles, CA (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... surgery procedures that most people are unfamiliar with. The article goes on to state ... procedures, but also many of these less common operations such as calf and cheek ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... ... a crisis. Her son James, eight, was out of control. Prone to extreme mood shifts ... upset him, he couldn’t control his emotions,” remembers Marcy. “If there was a knife ... and say he was going to kill them. If we were driving on the ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... Francisco, CA (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 ... ... CitiDent, is now offering micro-osteoperforation for accelerated orthodontic treatment. Dr. Cheng has extensive ... self-ligating Damon brackets , AcceleDent, and accelerated osteogenic orthodontics. , Micro-osteoperforation ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... People across the U.S. are sharpening ... Talker Award, an essay contest in which patients and their families pay tribute to ... at the 2016 National Society of Genetic Counselors (NSGC) Annual Education Conference (AEC) this ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... , June 24, 2016 ... the "Structural Electronics 2015-2025: Applications, Technologies, Forecasts" ... In-Mold Electronics, Smart Skin, Structural ... Structural electronics involves electronic and/or ... protective structures, replacing dumb structures such as vehicle ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... 2016 Research and Markets has announced ... Diagnostic Tests" report to their offering. ... The World Market for Companion Diagnostics covers ... Market analysis in the report includes the following: ... Diagnostic Kits) by Region (N. America, EU, ROW), 2015-2020 ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... , June 24, 2016  Arkis BioSciences, a ... invasive and more durable cerebrospinal fluid treatments, today ... The Series-A funding is led by Innova Memphis, ... and other private investors.  Arkis, new financing will ... and the market release of its in-licensed Endexo® ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: