Cure for heartaches. And this doesn't just mean reveling in a box la Bridget Jones when lonely. According to several scientists, chocolate contains polyphenols -- chemical compounds renowned for their heart-helping properties. Polyphenols, which are present in a chocolate bar in about the same quantities as in a glass of red wine, have been shown to prevent LDL cholesterol (the 'bad' cholesterol) from oxidizing into a form that damages arteries. In addition, Joe A. Vinson, Ph.D., professor of chemistry at the University of Scranton, in Scranton, Pa., says that chocolate has been shown to "raise good cholesterol 10 percent, therefore lowering the risk of heart complications by 20 percent." That should make your heart swell with love!
Cancer-fighter, the darker the better! Antioxidants, found in everything from green tea to bread crust, are commonly believed to fight cancer. Cocoa's antioxidant capacity tops that of long-trusted sources like strawberries and garlic. Vinson has determined that cocoa liquor, the derivative of the cocoa bean used in milk and dark chocolates that is absent from white chocolate, contains most of the antioxidants. Rich, dark chocolate lovers should celebrate: the darker the chocolate, the more antioxidants. Not only does chocolate contain a large quantity of antioxidants, Vinson discovered that chocolate contains high quality antioxidants. "The higher quality the antioxidants, the more work they can do," Vinson explained. "We've found that the antioxidants in dark chocol
Contact: Allison Byrum
American Chemical Society