A Project for Better Journalism chapter
around the world

Chocolate is good for your health

Chocolate is one of the most popular foods around, but many people often feel guilty when they decide to indulge in a fix of chocolate. For those of you who feel guilty after eating chocolate, especially dark chocolate, research shows you don’t have to feel guilty any more. Dark chocolate could be giving your brain, immune system and eyes a helping hand.

Researchers recently performed three studies, which show the benefits of the delicious treat. In one study, scientists allowed 10 people to eat a bar of dark chocolate, then monitored their brain waves. They found an increase in the gamma waves half an hour after eating the chocolate. Gamma waves are a sign that your nerve cells are all properly functioning. The importance of these gamma waves, is that they lead to optimum learning and memory formation.

In a second study, scientists studied how dark chocolate affects the immune system. Like the last study, 10 subjects consumed a bar of dark chocolate, but this time the scientists studied the subject’s blood work for the next week. They observed a rise in anti-inflammatory makers as well as an increase in the infection fighting cells known as T-cells. These come in handy for your immune system, especially during cold and flu season.  

In another study, in two different tests, 30 participants were given both a dark chocolate and a milk chocolate bar. About two hours after the participants ate the chocolate bars, they conducted vision tests, where they found that the participants who ate the dark chocolate bar had a small improvement in their vision. The most noticeable among the improves, was contrast in sensitivity (being able to tell the difference between objects in low light or bright light). The scientists behind this study, think that it has to do with how the cacao found in chocolate positively affects blood pressure/blood vessel functions. They think that dark chocolate allows more blood flow to the back of the eye, which improves vision.

To read more about how dark chocolate can improve your body’s function, visit:

http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/Wellness/dark-chocolate-give-brain-boost-studies-suggest/story?id=54720101

Google+