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Research: Eating a few dark chocolates a day can help lower blood pre

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According to the Daily Mail of April 3, chocolate lovers are blessed! A new study from the University of Coimbra in Portugal shows that people can lower their blood pressure within a month by eating a few dark chocolate bars a day. Although milk chocolate is also good for the body, dark chocolate with 90% cocoa has the best antihypertensive effect.

Researchers believe this is because dark chocolate is rich in flavanols, a powerful antioxidant. Flavanols can help people reduce insulin resistance, regulate body weight, and even accelerate wound healing.

To determine the effects of chocolate on the heart, the researchers asked 30 healthy adults aged 18 to 27 to eat 20 grams of chocolate a day for 30 consecutive days. Heart rate, arterial stiffness and pulse were measured before and after the experiment. At the same time, the participants were fasting other flavanols-rich foods, such as berries, tea and wine, to avoid affecting the results of the study. During the experiment, 15 participants ate chocolate with 55% cocoa content, and another 15 participants ate chocolate with 90% cocoa content. The results showed that the blood pressure of all participants improved significantly, but the effect of high cocoa content group was better. The findings were published in the Journal of Nutrition.

Blood pressure is measured in millimetres of mercury (mmHg). Systolic blood pressure is measured when the heart expels blood from the body, while diastolic blood pressure is measured when the heart rests between beats. According to the NHS, normal systolic blood pressure ranges from 90 to 120 mm Hg and diastolic blood pressure ranges from 60 to 80 mm Hg. In the above experiments, the systolic blood pressure of the participants in the high cocoa content group decreased by 3.5 mm Hg column, diastolic blood pressure by 2.3 mm Hg column, while the systolic blood pressure of the low cocoa content group decreased by 2.4 mm Hg column and diastolic blood pressure by 1.7 mm Hg column. The high cocoa group also had a healthier pulse rate. However, the researchers noted that the participants'heart data did not change during the experiment. This may be because the study lasted only 30 days, and only healthy young people were studied. The results of the study have certain limitations.

Similar studies are usually directed at middle-aged people who are ill. The advantage of this study is that it is the first to be conducted among young people. Therefore, the researchers say they will further study the heart benefits of chocolate and its optimal consumption, hoping that the results of this study can support chocolate as an effective means to cope with heart health problems. They claim that future research should focus on how chocolate works with our diet to achieve better health benefits.