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A sweet excuse to eat cocoa and chocolate

by Margery Gass | Sep 28, 2012

But not too much! The good news keeps on coming about the potential benefits of cocoa flavonols. They may improve your mood, cut through mind fog, and take your blood pressure down a few notches. One of the latest studies on these effects hinted that chocolate with medium and high levels of cocoa flavonols could improve visual attention and verbal skills in elderly people. Cocoa powder, rather than chocolate bars, may be the best way to get your flavonols with the least amount of calories. The short-term visual/verbal study also showed that the chocolate drinkers had decreased insulin resistance (a group of risk factors for diabetes and cardiovascular disease), blood pressure, and lipid peroxidation (which gauges cellular damage).

A recent dark chocolate/blood pressure study, which reviewed all of the reliable studies published, concluded that dark chocolate can bring down blood pressure a few points—2.8/2.2 mm Hg. Even a couple points helps reduce your cardiovascular risk. Overdoing it on chocolate bars can make you gain weight and wipe out the benefits. Just an ounce should do. 

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  1. 1 Ammi 21 Oct
    I have known about this for a few years and it is totally true. After I had my last babies, twins (babies #9 and 10) when I was 42, I began to have cravings for dark chocolate and I always carry it with me, LOL. It will settle my mood and cut through the "mind fog" quickly and it only takes a bit. I also take evening primrose oil and vit B complex daily and that really help as well but the dark chocolate is for the emergencies!
  2. 2 Nijole Lenkauskas-Slotkus 03 Oct
    My sister advised me of the blog / article "A Sweet Excuse to Eat Cocoa and Chocolate", and I am very happy she did....since I happen to be having a chocolate craving today!  :o)
    Thankyou Dr. Siga and Dr. Margery !!



MenoPause: the blog!

Posts to our Blog are written by NAMS staff members and Dr. Margery Gass. All posts are reviewed and edited by Dr. Gass. We strive to bring you the most recent and interesting information about various aspect of menopause and midlife health. We accept no advertising for our website. We want you to have accurate, unbiased, evidence-based information. 

Margery L.S. Gass, MD, NCMP
NAMS Executive Director

An internationally recognized leader in the field of menopause, Dr. Gass became Executive Director of The North American Menopause Society in 2010. Dr. Gass has been an investigator on numerous research projects, including serving as a principal investigator for the Women’s Health Initiative, and has published and presented on a wide range of topics related to menopause, including osteoporosis, sexual dysfunction, and hormone therapy.


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