Could better heart health be just a square or two of dark chocolate away? Quite possibly, according to new research in the British Medical Journal. The research, which looked at seven studies on chocolate consumption and health, found that eating chocolate regularly cut the risk of developing heart disease and having a stroke by a third. A third!
Although the research didn't differentiate between the health benefits of dark chocolate versus milk chocolate or other sweeter chocolaty treats, the researchers recommend that to gain the health benefits of chocolate to limit consumption of sugar and fat, since those two things can actually increase the risk of diabetes, which strains the heart. So, just with any sweet treat, moderation is key.
Researchers believe that the health benefits of chocolate come from its high content of polyphenols, which are antioxidant compounds that increase the body's production of nitric oxide, which helps reduce blood pressure.
Talk about a tasty way to keep your heart healthy! Try some of these no-guilt chocolate goodies tonight!