Small amount of chocolate could lower your risk of heart disease

Are you the type of person who cannot simply resist chocolates? But have second thoughts in taking a bite of your guilty pleasure in fear of bad health consequences? Well rejoice! A new study shows that eating chocolates in moderate amount can reduce the risk of developing heart disease.

A new research led by Dr. Chayakrit Krittanawong of Icachn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York found out that, eating chocolates in certain amount can lower your risk of acquiring heart disease than those who do not eat chocolates at all.

The study involved 575,000 individuals in which majority observed that eating three bars of chocolate a month reduced their risk of acquiring heart disease by 13 percent.

“The result is different from my hypothesis. I thought chocolate consumption might be proportionally associated with increased risk of heart failure.” Dr, Krittanawong shared how his new study proved his previous thought wrong.

Moderate chocolate consumption is associated with lower risk of heart failure. That means certain amount of chocolate consumption may benefit heart health.”

Dr. Krittanawong explained that perhaps it is the flavonoids that makes chocolate effective in reducing inflammation and regulating cholesterol. “I believe that chocolate is an important dietary source of flavonoids which are associated with reducing inflammation and increasing good cholesterol.” 

According to the dedicated doctor and researcher, flavonoids are responsible for increasing the levels of nitric oxide in our body. This process usually result in widened blood vessels which improves good blood flow and circulation.

However, despite the benefits that chocolate brings to our health, Dr. Krittanawong would like to remind everyone that chocolates are rich in saturated fats, which can raise the level of bad cholesterol. Hence, the dedicated doctor warns everyone to eat chocolates only in moderation.

“Therefore, MODERATE consumption is recommended at this moment.”

Meanwhile, the senior dietitian of the U.K. based charity, the British Heart Foundation named Victoria Taylor supports Dr. Krittanawong’s study,  “Chocolate, or rather, the cocoa it contains, has previously been linked to a variety of cardiovascular benefits.”

“This large-scale analysis suggests that enjoying a moderate amount of chocolate might protect you against heart failure, but [eating] too much can be detrimental.

The analysis is based on observational data, so other factors could also be responsible for the effects seen and we can’t directly translate the findings into recommendations.” Hence the U.K. based dietitian always remind her clients to treat chocolates as an occasional treat and eat it in moderation.

For an even healthier option, she encourages those with a sweet tooth to eat dark chocolates instead. This is because the dark chocolate has the highest content of cocoa, and the more cocoa a chocolate has the more flavonoids it contains.

Another study also supports Dr. Krittanawong’s findings. In a scientific paper published in Journal Heart last year 2017, a study stated that eating chocolate in moderation reduces the risk of acquiring atrial fibrillation.

The study participated by 55,502 men and woman suggests that eating chocolate in moderation improves regular and healthy heartbeat.

Elizabeth Mostofsky, lead author and also a professor in the Department of Epidemiology at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, finds the positive effect of chocolates in our health as promising. 

“Our study adds to the accumulating evidence on the health benefits of moderate chocolate intake and highlights the importance of behavioral factors for potentially lowering the risk of arrhythmias,” she explained.

A new research is still needed in order to find out which kind of chocolate is the most effective in boosting and improving our health. Certainly, whether it’s milk chocolate, dark chocolate, or white chocolate, it is important to keep in mind that everything should be taken in moderation! Any thing that is too much is bad news for our health!

Watch the video below for more information about this ‘sweet’ news!

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