Decrease Your Risk of an Irregular Heartbeat by Eating... <em>Chocolate</em>!
Amazing Health Advances Subscribe to Amazing Health Advances
An AHA Advertisement

To receive daily emails from Amazing Health Advances to your inbox CLICK HERE

Decrease Your Risk of an Irregular Heartbeat by Eating... Chocolate!

News Staff — Harvard, School of Public Health
Jul 5, 2017

“Even small amounts of cocoa consumption can have a positive health impact.” -- Elizabeth Mostofsky

(Cambridge, MA) — Consuming moderate amounts of chocolate was associated with significantly lower risk of being diagnosed with atrial fibrillation (AF)—a common and dangerous type of irregular heartbeat—in a large study of men and women in Denmark led by researchers at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and in Denmark.

“Our study adds to the accumulating evidence on the health benefits of moderate chocolate intake and highlights the importance of behavioral factors for potentially lowering the risk of arrhythmias,” said Elizabeth Mostofsky, instructor in the Department of Epidemiology at Harvard Chan School, a postdoctoral fellow at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, and lead author of the study.

Previous studies have suggested that cocoa and cocoa-containing foods—in particular, dark chocolate, which has a higher cocoa content than milk chocolate—confer cardiovascular benefits, perhaps because of their high content of flavanols, which may promote healthy blood vessel function. But there has been only limited research on the association between consuming chocolate and the occurrence of AF—which affects millions of people around the world and is linked with higher risk of stroke, heart failure, cognitive decline, dementia, and death.

“Despite the fact that most of the chocolate consumed by the study participants likely had relatively low concentrations of potentially protective ingredients, we still observed a significant association between eating chocolate and a lower risk of AF—suggesting that even small amounts of cocoa consumption can have a positive health impact,” Mostofsky said. “Eating excessive amounts of chocolate is not recommended because many chocolate products are high in calories from sugar and fat and could lead to weight gain and other metabolic problems. But moderate intake of chocolate with high cocoa content may be a healthy choice.”

Click here to read this report in its entirety.

Harvard, School of Public Health

Click Here For More Information


 

 

 

 

An AHA Advertisement




Amazing Health Advances