Why dark chocolate is good for the heart

Turns out dark chocolate is more than just a tasty treat - it's also good for heart health.
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01.Dark chocolate and heart health

why dark chocolate is good for the heart

Researchers at Louisiana State University have uncovered the reason behind why dark chocolate is good for heart health.

When you eat dark chocolate, the good microbes in the gut (such as lactic acid bacteria and Bifidobacterium) gobble up the chocolate, causing it to grow and ferment into an anti-inflammatory compound. Those compounds reduce the inflammation of cardiovascular tissue, which is good for the heart and reduces the long-term risk of stroke.

Unfortunately for the sweet-toothed lovers of milk chocolate, it’s the antioxidants in the cocoa powder content of chocolate rather than the sugar or milk that causes the positive effects. The researchers came to these conclusions by using a device mimicking a human gut to digest cocoa powder. 

While the antioxidants in the cocoa (also found in black tea and blueberries) weren’t digested well, when they reached the colon the good bacteria came to the rescue and turned them into anti-inflammatory compounds. 

For more information on food and nutrition, head to our Food and health section.



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