September 28, 2012
Why men should eat
chocolate too
Move over women! It now looks like you aren’t the only ones who should be eating dark chocolate.

Previous research has confirmed chocolate's vascular protective benefit for women. But a new study has found it confers benefits for men as well, as I had suggested it would.

Chocolate comes from cocoa beans. The dark rich color is due to its wondrous bioflavonoids, which modulate inflammation. As inflammation is the core cause of arterial disease, it makes sense that the compounds from cocoa will protect you. They’ll reduce platelet clumping, and by mechanisms not fully understood, chocolate bioflavonoids lower blood pressure.

This study found that men who ate the most chocolate, at least 63 grams per week, reduced their likelihood of stroke by 17%. I’d like to refine this for you. Chocolate comes in several varieties usually defined by its cocoa content. Milk chocolate has about 30% cocoa. Dark chocolates can go up to 80% or higher. Cocoa is bitter (the bioflavonoids themselves are bitter), so chocolate gets its wondrous taste from combining the bitter with the sweet (sugar, that is). The more cocoa in your chocolate, the better it is for you.

I’ve admitted in these pages that I regularly eat dark chocolate. Dark chocolate (several days a week) and occasional high quality ice cream are my only two dietary “indiscretions” in an otherwise nearly “perfect” diet of fresh organic produce.

If you decide to try chocolate, go for the dark kind. I think you’ll find that 70% cocoa content will suit your taste buds, as that amount does mine. If you are diabetic, watch the impact of chocolate’s sugar on your regular tests and move to higher cocoa content if necessary.

Yours for better health and medical freedom,

Continued Below...

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Ref: Melissa Healy, Los Angeles Times, August 29, 2012; Neurology Sept 2012.

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