There has been a lot of data recently published about the potential health benefits of chocolate. So, what’s the deal? Is chocolate good for you or bad? It’s both. Like almost anything in life, too much of a good thing can cause harm.
There is mounting evidence to support that chocolate may provide a number of health-promoting benefits. Studies have shown positive effects in heart health, weight management, and others. However, it is important to note that the claims linking chocolate to these benefits have not been approved by the FDA. Until then, you should consider any of these findings as preliminary, and chocolate should not be used to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
Can I slim down while eating chocolate?
A recent study from UC San Diego Medical School showed that eating small amounts of chocolate, the size of a 1 inch square, five days a week, lead to a slightly lower body mass index or BMI, even though the chocolate group ate slightly more calories. Chocolate contains a number of the same types of chemicals found in green tea. The data supporting green tea and weight loss is very strong. Therefore, it is probable that the similar chemicals in chocolate are having some effect.
In a number of studies, chocolate has been shown to reduce blood pressure. The effects are small, but significant. Chocolate appears to lower systolic blood pressure, the upper number, by roughly 2 points. This isn’t much, but in conjunction with other dietary changes and increases in physical activity, it may help reduce a borderline patient to a normal range. In people over 50, high blood pressure is a strong risk factor for heart disease. There are also significant amounts of data pointing towards chocolate providing a benefit in reducing ‘bad’ cholesterol. Blood flow and insulin resistance, two other risk factors, were also improved.
What makes chocolate work?
There are a number of compounds in chocolate, which have an effect on the body. One compound, called theobromine, is a stimulant very similar to caffeine. Many scientists believe that the benefits are linked to a type of antioxidant called,epicatechin. Epicatechin is a part of the class of compounds called catechins, which are in foods such as green tea. The health benefits of green tea are even more pronounced than chocolate, lending strength to this argument. The challenge is, adding sugar and various fats to chocolate, not to mention heating and processing, complicates the picture greatly.
For more helpful information on diet, exercises, and losing weight, visit Anvanca.com. We are focused on weight loss, and the healthy benefits of losing weight. In order to make it work, I think people need coaching. This is why we developed Anvanca. Anvanca is the only program that combines an effective weight loss supplement with free personalized coaching to help you lose weight and keep it off. We believe coaching is critical in the first month as you learn new behaviors. If you are interested in learning more, check us out at Anvanca.com.