Dark Chocolate lowers
July 19th 2005
individuals that ate dark chocolate with those that did not over a two
week period. All the participants had untreated high blood pressure.
Those that ate the dark chocolate had a “clinically meaningful decline”
The research is
published in this month’s American Heart Association journal
Hypertension (July 18th). They were most interested in the
Flavonoid component of dark chocolate.
Half of the study
subjects were given a 3 ½ ounce bar of dark chocolate per day. The
other half of the 20 participants were given white chocolate. The white
chocolate lacks flavinoids, but contains the other components including
fat, sugar and calories.
After 15 days the
groups switch, and the first half got the white chocolate and the second
group got the dark. This chocolate is different from most chocolates
found at the local store. The research chocolate had a bitter sweet
They concluded that the dark chocolate lowered the systolic pressure
(top number) by 12 points ( 12 mm HG) and lowered the diastolic pressure
by 9 points. The blood pressure did not change when the volunteers ate
white chocolate. The study’s author, Dr. Jeffrey Blumberg at the Tufts
University in Boston said, "This is the kind of reduction in blood
pressure often found with other healthful dietary interventions."
For an added benefit, eating dark chocolate also boosted the normal
response to insulin and kept blood sugar levels down. Dark chocolate
also lowered the LDL (bad) cholesterol. The antioxidant Flavinoids can
also be found in fruits, vegetables and whole grains.
Neither milk-chocolate nor white-chocolate offer the benefits. More
research is needed to determine dosage. The researchers warn that
patients should not replace their current therapy with dark chocolate.
Best Syndication Staff Writer
misspellings: Heart disease attack stroke hart presure