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By Lisa Collier Cool Jan 24, 2013 341 Recommend
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Amazing, but true: Dark chocolate can add years to men‟s lives, by reducing their risk for a heart attack or stroke. Eating the sweet treat in moderate amounts
provides even more powerful cardiovascular protection for men than it does for women. compared to people who ate standard chocolate. according to a new study published in Molecular Nutrition & Food Research. or white chocolate after a 10-hour fast. Blood and urine tests were conducted two hours before and six hours after eating the candy. RN. The Best Foods To Fight Inflammation An Intriguing Difference Between Men and Women In the study. Overly active platelets can clump into artery-blocking clots. eating the fortified chocolate only reduced aggregation. Activation is a reversible process in which platelets start to get stickier. potentially leading to a heart attack or stroke. Guys who ate the enriched dark chocolate had a significant decrease in both platelet activation and aggregation. In both sexes. Reverse Disease. so platelet function is an important measure of cardiovascular health. which could lead to clots. The results revealed an interesting difference between men and women. Scottish scientists analyzed the effects of dark chocolate fortified with extra cocoa on platelets. blood components that help stop bleeding. while aggregation occurs when the platelets clump together. The researchers concluded that dark chocolate that‟s high in flavan-3-ols has a positive effect on platelet function in both sexes. BSN. standard dark chocolate. To find out more about how dark chocolate keeps men‟s hearts happy and healthy. author of The Omni Diet: The Revolutionary Plan to Lose Weight. In women. but the benefits are greater in men. Fight Inflammation and Change Your Life Forever. suggesting that it had a blood-thinning effect. I talked to Tana Amen. healthy volunteers were randomly assigned to eat one of three types of chocolate: dark chocolate enriched with extra flavan-3-ols (antioxidant compounds found in cocoa). . bleeding time increased after eating the enriched chocolate.
7 Women's Disease Men Should Watch Out For Good for the Heart and the Brain The study builds on previous research showing that dark chocolate and cocoa have a wide range of cardiovascular benefits. because it lowers bad cholesterol. One less-known benefit is its effect on the endothelium. Over a ten-year period.” says Amen. men with high consumption of the tasty treat had a 19 percent lower risk of stroke. sometimes called “the brain of the arteries. “Dark chocolate is one of the best foods for the heart and the brain. but research suggests that flavanols account for many of the heart-protective effects of chocolate and cocoa. sending more blood to the heart and brain.” Since high blood pressure is the leading risk factor for stroke. “Nitric oxide is the most nutritious „food‟ for the arteries and a major contributor to heart and brain health.) Studies show that dark chocolate enhances endothelial function in healthy people.” (Nitric oxide is not related to nitrous oxide. which in turn increases vasodilation. the “laughing gas” used in dentistry. compared to those who ate the least chocolate. says Amen. according to Harvard Medical School. while flavonoid-rich cocoa may even help reverse the endothelial dysfunction caused by smoking (after the person kicks the habit).000 men found that those who ate the most chocolate had the lowest rate of stroke. What’s the Best “Dose” of Chocolate for Heart Health? .” “Chocolate is known to boost nitric oxide (produced by the endothelium). and improves blood pressure. the inner lining of the blood vessels. so vessels relax and widen. it‟s not surprising that a 2012 study of more than 37. raises good cholesterol. In addition. How Does Chocolate Combat Heart Attacks? The cacao bean contains more than 400 compounds that could influence health. dark chocolate may improve coronary artery function in heart transplant patients.
before you wolf down a huge chocolate bar for the good of your heart. Eating large amounts could pack on extra pounds. since chocolate is high in fat and calories. Amen advises choosing chocolate that is at least 70 percent cocoa. consider this: Studies have consistently found that it just takes a little square a day (about one-third of an ounce) to keep the heart and brain healthy. “Look for extra dark chocolate that is dairy-free and low in sugar to get the most benefit. Also consider including unsweetened cocoa in your diet: “I put it in smoothies and add it to desserts.” she says.” .However.