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Does Dark Chocolates Reduce Blood Pressure And Improve Insulin Resistance?

Submitted by Stella Morgan on July 27, 2007

Dark chocolates possess flavonoids, which are rich in antioxidants. Antioxidants are free radical scavengers. They eliminate these free radicals and protect the body from degenerative diseases, such as cancer and cardiac diseases. They have an optimistic effect on blood glucose metabolism. Impairment in insulin sensitivity is a common problem suffered by diabetics.

This reduces the effective processing of blood glucose. Dark chocolate enhances sensitivity to insulin and reduces the blood pressure.

Dark chocolates hinder aggregation of platelets, which causes heart attack or stroke.

Flavonoids in cocoa also relax the blood vessels. This prevents inflammation caused by enzymes. Catechins are potent antioxidants and 100 grams of chocolates contain 53.5 mg of catechins.

This helps in alleviating degenerative diseases. Chocolates are good sources of magnesium and copper. This helps in regulating hypertension and heartbeat.

Chocolates also help in stimulating the kidneys and aids in digestion.

Flavonoids in cocoa and dark chocolate are friendly to the heart. White chocolates fail to achieve this, as they do not contain cocoa and in turn are poor sources of flavonoids. Research reveals an improvement in blood glucose metabolism, on consumption of dark chocolates. The systolic pressure of individuals on dark chocolates also decreased in comparison to those on white chocolates. Antioxidants prove beneficial by improving the arterial lining, thereby the process of contraction and relaxation takes place easily.

Blood flow is improvised and thus lower blood pressure. Tea and wine, which are good sources of antioxidants, also exhibit such effects. This does not refer to increasing the intake of dark chocolates, but proves cocoas’ benefits. White chocolates are apt standards for comparison, as they comprise of all the other ingredients that dark chocolates possess, except for the antioxidants. Phenyl ethylamine, a mood brightener is present in chocolates. The flavor of chocolates raises the theta waves in brain, thereby provides relaxation and stress-free life.

Individuals on dark chocolates, experience a reduction in the LDL cholesterol levels by around 10 per cent. These studies highlight on the benefits derived out of flavonoids and does not recommend chocolate bingeing. It also focuses on increasing flavonoids in our dietary regimen, such as vegetables, whole grains and fruits. Milk is not recommended with dark chocolates, as they hinder with the nutrient absorption. They interfere with the benefits obtained from eating dark chocolates. Studies also reveal increased levels of epicatechin, a beneficial compound present in dark chocolates. Sweets and other junk foods in the diet can be replaced by dark chocolates. 
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