Cocoa and dark chocolate are rich in flavonoids and may lower blood pressure.
5,000 people aged 25-93 years participated in the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) Family Heart Study.
Compared to subjects who did not report any chocolate intake, odds ratios for coronary heart disease (CHD) were:
- 1.0 for subjects consuming chocolate 1-3 times/month
- 0.74 for subjects consuming chocolate 1-4 times/week
- 0.43 for subjects consuming chocolate 5+ times/week
Consumption of non-chocolate candy was associated with a 49% higher prevalence of CHD comparing 5+/week vs. none per week [OR = 1.49].
Consumption of chocolate is inversely related with prevalent CHD in a general United States population.
Chocolate consumption is inversely associated with prevalent coronary heart disease: the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute Family Heart Study. Djoussé L, Hopkins PN, North KE, Pankow JS, Arnett DK, Ellison RC. Clin Nutr. 2011 Apr;30(2):182-7. Epub 2010 Sep 19.
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From Writer's Almanac:
Ode to Chocolate by Barbara Crooker (excerpt)
I hate milk chocolate, don't want clouds
of cream diluting the dark night sky,
don't want pralines or raisins, rubble
in this smooth plateau. I like my coffee
black, my beer from Germany, wine
from Burgundy, the darker, the better.