The benefits of dark chocolate have been reported everywhere,including these very pages on numerous occasions. But new findings unveiled at the 247th NationalMeeting andExposition of the American ChemicalSociety reveal one ofthe mechanisms by which cacao works its metabolic magic.
Cocoa powder and dark chocolate contain substances called polyphenols, which are powerful antioxidants and anti-inflammatories. The problem is, a portion of the larger polyphenols are too big to be absorbed through the stomach wall, but the new findings show that once they reach the colon, gut bacteria – the very same beneficial probiotics we get when we eat yogurt – break the polyphenols down so they get into the bloodstream. This Lessens inflammation of the cardiovascular tissue and may account for why chocolate eaters have a lower risk of stroke.
Just another reason not to feel guilty when you consume that one to two squares a day – andyes, that’s all it takes!