Health Tips: Indulge Your Heart

A heart-healthy indulgence? Say it’s so! A group of scientists recently found that study participants who ate 75 grams (about three ounces) of dark chocolate daily for a week had improved endothelial function and blood pressure. According to research published in the study, “a reduction of 3 mmHg in systolic BP can reduce relative risk of death from stroke by eight percent, from cardiovascular disease in general by five percent, and overall all-cause mortality by four percent.” It has to be dark chocolate though, with 70 percent cocoa or greater. It’s the flavonoids in the dark chocolate that help the blood pressure: Milk chocolate has them too, but in much lesser quantities. The more processed the chocolate, the more flavonoids are lost.