Can it be true? Can chocolate really be good for you? If you’re a true chocoholic, you’ll be thrilled to learn that more and more research is taking place every day regarding chocolate and its effects on the heart. According to a study that took place in Norfolk, England, which lasted 11 years and followed the health patterns of approximately 21,000 residents, there is evidence that chocolate may be good for your heart.
The results showed that only 12% of the people researched that were eating the most chocolate died from or developed the cardiovascular disease during the course of the study. Surprisingly, 17.4% of the people studied that didn’t eat chocolate at all developed or died of this disease during the study. The medical journal called Heart published the findings, which was good news for chocolate lovers across the world.
Not All Chocolate Is Healthy
You shouldn’t be automatically reaching for your favorite chocolate bar, however, since many studies show that only dark chocolate offers cardiovascular protection. Cacao beans are rich in flavonoids, which are a type of antioxidant. Red wine, apples, blueberries, cherries, nuts, and pears are also full of these heart-healthy flavonoids. The flavonoids may also lower blood pressure, fight against cell damage, prevent blood clotting and improve blood flow to the heart and brain.
Generally speaking, dark chocolate contains more cocoa, which means it contains more flavonoids. Keep this in mind the next time you’re reaching for chocolate. There are many dark chocolate options available that can satisfy your craving for chocolate in a healthier way.
It’s not recommended that you eat a lot of chocolate but rather enjoy it in moderation. There is no evidence available that would suggest that chocolate is a no-no if you’re worried about the risk of developing cardiovascular disease.
The best news is that you can now indulge in dark chocolate in moderation without having to feel guilty. Make sure that your chocolate intake is only a small part of an overall heart-healthy diet and, of course, if you have any other health concerns such as diabetes, consult with your doctor first before consuming any type of chocolate.