The latest news came from a German study that evaluated the relationship between chocolate consumption and risk of cardiovascular disease.
Dietary intake, including chocolate and BP were assessed at baseline (1994-98) in 19,357 participants without myocardial infarction (MI) and stroke. These participants were part of the study of the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition and were not using antihypertensive medication.
After a mean follow-up of 8 year, participants who were in the top quartile of chocolate consumption had a lower level of systolic and diastolic blood pressure (1.00 mmHg and 0.9 mmHg lower) when compared with participants in the bottom quartile of chocolate consumption.
Furthermore, participants who consumed high volume of chocolate experienced a 39% reduction in the risk of stroke and myocardial infarction.
It appeared the reduction in cardiovascular risk (stroke and myocardial infarction) was related to the small drop in blood pressure. The 1 to 2 mmHg drop in blood pressure resulted in major reduction in risk of stroke and cardiovascular events.
Source: European Heart Journal 2010; 2(13):1554-1556.
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