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HHS Healthbeat

Cocoa and heart risk

Flavonoids are antioxidants, commonly found in fruits and vegetables. A systematic review and pooling of randomized trials found that consumption of cocoa rich in flavonoids may improve risk factors for heart disease and diabetes.

Eric Ding is an epidemiologist at the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston.

“Higher cocoa flavonoid consumption reduced systolic blood pressure, reduced LDL cholesterol, the bad cholesterol, increased HDL cholesterol, the good cholesterol.” (10 seconds)

The study, however, used flavonoid rich cocoa with balanced calorie levels.

“In general, darker chocolate is better because they have more flavonoids.” (5 seconds)

The study was supported by the National Institutes of Health and presented at an American Heart Association conference on nutrition and physical activity.

Learn more at hhs.gov.

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