Choc full of goodness

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Studies prove that, in moderation, dark chocolate does more than quiet a craving…

 

A nine year Swedish study of more than 31,000 women found that those who ate one or two servings of dark chocolate a week cut their risk for heart failure by as much as a third. Talk about health benefits! Research by the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center found that chocolate contains comparable quantities of the same antioxidant properties found in red wine that protect against heart disease. A German study found that a square of dark chocolate a day lowered blood pressure and reduced risk of heart attack and stroke by 39%!

What makes dark chocolate so deliciously good for us? The answer is flavonoids, antioxidants in chocolate that helps increase the flexibility of veins and arteries. Apparently dark chocolate contains nearly eight times the number of antioxidants found in strawberries!

So now we know that chocolate is good for the heart but did you know that it could be good for the waistline too? A study by the University of California found that people who reported eating chocolate more frequently were thinner than those who ate less, as measured by their body mass index (BMI). It’s a puzzling discovery and Dr Beatrice Golomb, who led the study, said that it, “clearly wasn’t explained by the fact that people who ate chocolate ate less food, because they ate more. And they didn’t exercise more than those who didn’t eat as much chocolate…”

Working on a budget or filing your tax? You might want to swop that cup of coffee for a hot dark chocolate. A study reported in 2009 showed that people did a better job of counting backwards in groups of three after they had consumed a hot cocoa drink. Apparently the flavonoids are thought to increase blood flow to the brain.

Dark chocolate is the smart choice when it comes to satisfying a craving and studies continue to reveal that, in moderation, chocolate has plenty of health benefits. This is the most delicious health news we’ve heard in a while so go on; take a bite!

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Sources: About.comHealthland Time, Live Science and Women’s Health Magazine

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