Heart disease and strokes, alongside the complications that surround them, are two of the biggest contributors to the mortality rate when you enter ‘old age’. Anything that could help hold them at bay is a good thing and sometimes, as all doctors and scientists will know, the solution to a problem will come from the most unlikely of sources.
Most medical cures are uncomfortable, unpalatable and unpredictable. But there may be a glimmer of hope for all those who have long dreamed that the foods they love to eat, but feel they shouldn’t, are found to be good for them after all. Finally, after years of wasteful wishing it seems that one such food, loved by millions and blamed for all manner of health issues – chocolate! – may well, in fact, have some serious health benefits.
A study of 25,000 middle aged and elderly people, conducted by researchers at the University of Aberdeen the findings of which were published in the British Medical Journal’s ‘Heart’ Magazine, suggests evidence of this.
Specifically, that those in the study who consumed 16-100g of chocolate a day – and not just the bitter high cocoa percentage dark chocolate but every day, far tastier, milk chocolate as well – had an 11% reduction in their risk of cardiovascular disease, a 25% reduction in the risk of death from an associated condition, and a massive 23% reduction in the risk of suffering from a stroke.
Medical professionals are keen to prevent a rush on the corner shop fraternity – stating that there were many other factors at play here, such as the relative ages of those who ate more chocolate and their fitness compared with others in the study. But, while it’s important to counter the weight gain potential of eating chocolate with an adequate amount of additional exercise, it seems that this study supports a much accepted view that chocolate may well be good for our hearts and minds.
So stop abstaining, don’t hold yourself back, chocoholics unite in celebration, for the foodstuff of your desire is, in moderation of course, good for you – because science tells you so.