Heart failure risk lowers with moderate chocolate consumption

August 30, 2018

A group of scientists have found that eating up to three bars of chocolate a month results in a13 per cent lower risk of heart failure. But hold on. Before you go ahead and decide to indulge in those sweet treats, please note that overindulgence can cost dearly. Eating chocolate every day may increase the risk of heart failure by 17 per cent, according to researchers from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in the US.

Researchers say that natural compounds in cocoa called flavonoids boost blood vessel health and help reduce inflammation. “I believe that chocolate is an important dietary source of flavonoids which are associated with reducing inflammation and increasing good cholesterol. Flavonoids can increase nitric oxide — a gas which expands blood vessels, helping circulation,” lead researcher Chayakrit Krittanawong, from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in the US has been quoted as saying in PTI. He also added that moderate consumption is good for health as chocolate is high in saturated fats. The research was presented at the European Society of Cardiology conference in Germany. It observed five studies involving more than 575,000 individuals. Researchers also noted that further trials were needed to confirm the results.

In the past, a clear link has been established between consumption of dark chocolate and reduced risk of cardiovascular diseases. In a study named An Observation of Cardiovascular Risk in Luxembourg noted that those who ate 100g of chocolate a day — equivalent to a bar — had reduced insulin resistance and improved liver enzymes. Insulin sensitivity is a well-established risk factor for cardiovascular disease. The findings were published in the British Journal of Nutrition.  Phytochemical-rich foods including dark chocolate in moderate amounts can work wonders for your heart. However, Dr. Saverio Stranges, who carried out this study also emphasized on the importance of differentiating between the natural product cocoa and the processed product chocolate, which is high in energy. He added that physical activity, diet and other lifestyle factors need to be balanced carefully to avoid detrimental weight gain over a period of time.


Category: Education, Features

Comments are closed.