Health Watch -- Affairs of the Heart: Chocolate

Health Watch is a Public Service of the Office of News and Publications and is intended to provide general information only and should not replace the advice of a medical professional. You should contact your physician if you have questions about any of these topics.

This week on Health Watch, we’re talking about keeping your heart healthy. Instead of buying a box of chocolates for your sweetheart, nutrition experts at UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas suggest you make a nice mug of cocoa instead.

Chocolate in its raw form is a good source of the antioxidant flavanol, which can help protect arteries from damage and prevent heart disease. But the sugar, milk, butter and other ingredients needed to turn cocoa into candy make it high in fat and calories, which isn’t good for your heart. Milk chocolate has more of these added ingredients than dark chocolate. Lona Sandon, a registered dietitian at UT Southwestern, says a better way to enjoy chocolate is as a cup of dark hot cocoa. That can be as good for your heart as drinking a glass of red wine.


February 2006

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