I don’t know about you but I always delight in seeing chocolate in the news for just how health giving it can be.
With all the good press dark chocolate has been given, me and quite a few of my friends indulge in a square or two of raw or dark chocolate with 50% cocoa solids or more each day, for health benefits you understand! But here it is again: ‘Two-week dark chocolate diet that reduces heart disease risk’ headlining in the press.
The studies in question were carried out at the University of L’Aquila in Italy and Tufts University in the States and reported on in the Journal of Nutrition. The outcome of the trials is that eating dark chocolate daily for two weeks may lessen the risk of heart disease. Eating a couple of chunks daily for a fortnight can keep high blood pressure at bay and reduce the risk of diabetes. The chocolate appears to bring about such benefits quickly. Only dark chocolate works though, so take a fresh look at the high cocoa solids chocolate with health in mind. For us milk chocolate lovers, all is not bad news. Montezuma’s have a Milk chocolate from the dark side, with 54% cocoa solids. For the serious dark chocolate eaters we have 73% cocoa solids dark chocolate from Montezuma’s, Green & Black’s 85% cocoa solids intense dark, Maya gold has 55% cocoa solids and is really delicious, combining fairtrade dark chocolate with orange and spices. My problem is limiting it to a few squares, remember the calories do add up.
Cocoa flavanols appear to increase nitric oxide bio availability, protect vascular endothelium and decrease the risk factor for cardiovascular disease. The people in the test systolic and diastolic blood pressures also fell after the dark chocolate diet.