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Dr. Tori Hudson, Portland, Oregon, Blog Healthline Blog

clip_image002Researchers in Australia observed 1216 older women whose average age was 75, for close to 10 years and compared atherosclerotic vascular disease with chocolate intake, categorized as rare intake = < 1 25-50 gm serving per week and frequent intake = > 1servings per week.

Approximately half of the women rarely ate chocolate and 36% ate it weekly and 17% ate it daily. Women who consumed chocolate frequently were much less likely to be hospitalized for atherosclerotic vascular disease, or even die from it, than were women who consumed chocolate rarely. Women who ate chocolate frequently were also significantly less likely to develop ischemic heart disease, congestive heart failure and plaques in the carotid artery.

Other research results and higher intake of flavonoids, including chocolate, from prior studies have also shown an association between higher chocolate intake and improved cardiovascular outcomes. Cocoa is rich in flavonoids and is the principal ingredient in cocoa. While a high quality randomized double-blind trial could confirm these observational studies… it might indeed be difficult to find women who would be willing to be in the placebo group rather than the chocolate group. For now… I encourage women to eat 1-2 oz or greater than 70% dark chocolate at least once per week; I vote for 1 oz daily!!!


Lewis J, et al. Habitual chocolate intake and vascular disease: A prospective study of clinical outcomes in older women. Arch Intern Med 2010 Nov 8; 170:1857.

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