Dreamstime

The benefits of chocolate sure are sweet

February 14, 2019 - 3:30 am
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KYW Newsradio’s Medical Reports are sponsored by Independence Blue Cross. 

By Dr. Brian McDonough, Medical Editor

PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — Hopefully you have received a gift or are preparing to purchase a gift for your special valentine — or at the very least buying a gift for yourself.

This is a major day for the chocolate industry, and there is no doubt that those who make chocolate have benefited from the numerous headlines about the health advantages of chocolate.

There have been studies in the past that have said chocolate can help reduce blood pressure, decrease the risk of heart disease, make life less stressful, and perhaps even improve memory. 

Flavanols present in cocoa are responsible for antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that help — dark chocolate is best. There are fewer flavanols in milk chocolate and white chocolate. 

The problem with chocolate is that most commercially sold chocolate have high levels of sugar and additives, which can essentially subtract the bonuses of the flavanols.