Cocoa consumption shown to reduce blood pressure

Tuesday, August 21, 2012 by: J. D. Heyes
Tags: cocoa, blood pressure, scientific studies

eTrust Pro Certified

Most Viewed Articles
Popular on Facebook
BACK INTO THE CLOSET: Why U.S. reporters are not allowed to write about rainbow events in nations where being gay is still condemned
Depopulation test run? 75% of children who received vaccines in Mexican town now dead or hospitalized
A family destroyed: Six-month-old dies after clinic injects baby with 13 vaccines at once without mother's informed consent
INVESTIGATION: Three days before Dr. Bradstreet was found dead in a river, U.S. govt. agents raided his research facility to seize a breakthrough cancer treatment called GcMAF
BAM! Chipotle goes 100% non-GMO; flatly rejecting the biotech industry and its toxic food ingredients
BOMBSHELL: China and America already at war: Tianjin explosion carried out by Pentagon space weapon in retaliation for Yuan currency devaluation... Military helicopters now patrolling Beijing
ECONOMIC SLAVERY FOR ALL: While we were distracted with the Confederate flag flap, Congress quietly forfeited our entire economic future via fast-track trade authority
March Against Monsanto explodes globally... World citizens stage massive protests across 38 countries, 428 cities... mainstream media pretends it never happened
GMO crops totally banned in Russia... powerful nation blocks Monsanto's agricultural imperialism and mass poisoning of the population
SCOTUS same-sex marriage decision may have just legalized the concealed carry of loaded firearms across all 50 states, nullifying gun laws everywhere
Nearly every mass shooting in the last 20 years shares one surprising thing? and it's not guns
Vicious attack on Dr. Oz actually waged by biotech mafia; plot to destroy Oz launched after episode on glyphosate toxicity went viral
Holistic cancer treatment pioneer Dr. Nicholas Gonzalez dies suddenly; patients mourn the loss of a compassionate, innovative doctor who helped thousands heal from cancer
Pepsi drops aspartame from diet soda as consumers reject toxic sweetener
Bride of Frankenfood: Hillary Clinton pushes GMO agenda... hires Monsanto lobbyist... takes huge dollars from Monsanto
Wild eyes and bowl cuts: Why do mass shooters always share the same hair styles and crazed zombie stares?
Mind control through emotional domination: How we're all being manipulated by the "crisis of the NOW"
Genetically white woman now claims self-identify as black: If you can choose your gender, can you also choose your race? What about your species? Can a human claim to be a llama?
(NaturalNews) Record heat and drought conditions across much of the country make it pretty difficult to think about the approaching winter, but once it gets here why not supplement your diet with a little cocoa?

Not only does it taste good, new research shows it could be very good for you as well.

According to data culled from 20 separate studies over the last ten years, researchers have discovered that consuming dark chocolate or cocoa daily - both of which are rich in plant compounds known as flavanols - could lead to a slight dip in your blood pressure for a short while.

People who consumed flavanol-rich cocoa products daily for a few weeks saw their blood pressure drop by about two or three points. And while that may not sound like much, consider a) cocoa tastes good; b) every little bit helps when it comes to lowering blood pressure because of its long-term, cumulative effect on your cardiovascular system; and c) see answer "a."

Studies examined appear reliable

Medical experts aren't quite ready to recommend cocoa supplementation over medications aimed at treating high blood pressure. But they are saying that the level of blood pressure reduction linked to daily doses of cocoa are the equivalent to the addition of "diet changes or exercise," Reuters reported, citing the researchers.

Wait, though. That doesn't mean you should drop exercise in lieu of eating more cocoa, says Dr. Elizabeth Jackson, a cardiologist and assistant professor of medicine at the University of Michigan Health Systems in Ann Arbor.

"If I had to choose between cocoa and exercise, I would take the exercise," said Jackson, who had no part in the new study. "To me this says a little bit of dark chocolate isn't too bad, but you wouldn't want to go overboard with the calories and eat a pound of chocolate," she said.

The comparative study, the results of which were published in The Cochrane Library, researchers from Australia examined a number of online databases to find randomized controlled trials, which are considered the "gold standard" of medical research, comparing people who ate flavanol-filled cocoa products to people eating low-flavanol cocoa powder or products that contained no flavanol.

The researchers could not say flavanols are responsible for lowering blood pressure in participants of the study. But the compounds themselves, which are also found in other foods (green tea, red wine, berries) have been linked to the production of nitric oxide in the body which, the authors note, helps to relax blood vessels. That, in turn, lowers blood pressure.

The American Heart Association says a persons' systolic blood pressure - that's the top number - should be lower than 120 millimeters of mercury (mm Hg), while their diastolic, or lower, number should be around 80 mm Hg or less.

There are some variables, but overall it seems to work

The studies examined followed people who were generally healthy for between two and 18 weeks. Researchers say that of 856 participants, 429 of them ate between three grams and 100 grams of cocoa or dark chocolate that contained anywhere between 30 mg to 1080 mg of flavanols every day.

The remaining 427 people were put in groups that ate low-flavanol cocoa powder and other products that did not contain them at all.

At the end of the studies, the flavanol-rich group saw systolic blood pressure drops of about 2.8 mm Hg and diastolic decreases of about 2.2 mm Hg.

There were some additional factors to consider regarding the results, experts noted.

For one, it's not clear exactly how much of the flavanol-rich cocoa should be consumed daily in order to substantially reduce blood pressure or even if larger doses would have greater effects. Also, not all cocoa products are created equal; Some contain more flavanols than others.

And, experts noted, the effects seemed to be greater in younger adults, a finding that led Jackson to comment that she wasn't surprised since blood vessels tend to become less elastic as people get older.

Nevertheless, the study's lead author sounded a positive note overall.

"Moderate, regular dosages of flavanol-rich cocoa products such as dark chocolate may be part of a comprehensive lifestyle plan to optimizing health," Dr. Karin Ried of the National Institute of Integrative Medicine in Melbourne, told Reuters.


Follow real-time breaking news headlines on
Cocoa at
Join over four million monthly readers. Your privacy is protected. Unsubscribe at any time.
comments powered by Disqus
Take Action: Support by linking back to this article from your website

Permalink to this article:

Embed article link: (copy HTML code below):

Reprinting this article:
Non-commercial use OK, cite with clickable link.

Follow Natural News on Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, and Pinterest

Colloidal Silver

Advertise with NaturalNews...

Support NaturalNews Sponsors:

Advertise with NaturalNews...


Sign up for the FREE Natural News Email Newsletter

Receive breaking news on GMOs, vaccines, fluoride, radiation protection, natural cures, food safety alerts and interviews with the world's top experts on natural health and more.

Join over 7 million monthly readers of, the internet's No. 1 natural health news site. (Source:

Your email address *

Please enter the code you see above*

No Thanks

Already have it and love it!

Natural News supports and helps fund these organizations:

* Required. Once you click submit, we will send you an email asking you to confirm your free registration. Your privacy is assured and your information is kept confidential. You may unsubscribe at anytime.