Chocolate: good or bad? It’s on the list along with questions about butter and eggs as one of the things Emily and I are most asked about in the course of our work as nutritionists.
A quick look a the science does show positive health benefits to eating chocolate. One study found that eating a portion of 60% cocoa solid chocolate at lunchtime made you feel more alert in the afternoon, and also reduced blood pressure. Other studies have also showed positive benefits for the heart.
Research also found that dark chocolate at the end of a meal reduced cravings for sweet and salty foods, and also that dark chocolate is more filling than the sweeter milk chocolate.
So, all in all, there seem to be some positive reasons why a little dark chocolate is a good thing, but just don’t overdo it, and if you are particularly sensitive to stimulants such as caffeine, or are a migraine sufferer, then you may need to steer clear. And even dark chocolate has added sugar, so watch out if you are trying to give up the white stuff.
If you want to try something a bit new, then a chocolate called Ohso has added probiotics, claiming that each bar has over a billion live cultures embedded in each bar. Who knew?
Lisa and Emily
Michelle Montopoli, Larry C Stevens, Constance Smith, George Montopoli, Stephanie Passino, Somer Brown, Lena Camou, Katie Carson, Shannon Maaske, Kathleen Knights, William Gibson, Joyce Wu. The Acute Electrocortical and Blood Pressure Effects of Chocolate. Neuro Regulation, 2015
University of Copenhagen. “Dark Chocolate Is More Filling Than Milk Chocolate And Lessens Cravings.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 December 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081210091039.htm>.