Scientists have found even more evidence that consuming chocolate can be good for your health. Studies have previously shown that chocolate protects against high blood pressure and helps in the prevention of diabetes. New research shows that it may also help protect people that are in the high risk group for heart attacks and/or strokes.
Milk or white chocolate does not provide the same benefits as dark chocolate, which is rich in flavonoids. Flavonoids is what produces the heart protecting effects of dark chocolate.
The results of the tests were spectacular – showing that a daily consumption of 100 grams of dark chocolate could potentially avert 70 non-fatal and 15 fatal cardiovascular “events” per 10,000 people treated over ten years.
Of course chocolate is high in calories, so eating too much can offset the benefits. A lifestyle that includes an occassional piece of dark chocolate can reduce blood pressure and improve insulin sensitivity, as long as it is accompanied with a nutritious diet and exercise regimen.
Dark chocolate and cocoa are rich in cell-protecting antioxidants — natural compounds found in fruits, vegetables, grains and nuts. In short-term clinical trials, dark chocolate reduced blood pressure, improved blood flow, showed mild anti-clotting effects and helped to prevent plaque formation in arteries. Despite its sweet reputation, dark chocolate has a low glycemic index similar to that of oatmeal — meaning it does not send your blood sugar spiking. Chocolate’s health benefits include potential cancer-fighting abilities and improved cognitive ability.
So if and when your Specialty Care Services home care nursing professional offers you some chocolate, consider it a healthy treat!