Research demonstrates that cocoa flavanols (CF)—plant nutrients abundant in the cocoa bean—have a range of health benefits
THE CATCH: traditional processing destroys most of the beneficial CFs in chocolate, but none of the sugar, calories and fat, so claims that chocolate is good for your heart are loose, at best.
Recently, food scientists have developed ways to preserve and concentrate CFs in food and supplements, some of which are already available in stores. Starting this fall, researchers will study the efficacy of a “chocolate pill” to reduce the risk of heart disease.
It’s unlikely Snickers bars will ever gain health-food status, but they and other confections low in sugar and fat could someday deliver high-enough concentrations of flavanols to give “heart-healthy” claims some merit.