Health Watch -- The Cold Season: Cocoa

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’ve been talking about colds and other cold weather woes. You can prevent colds by staying away from sick people and washing your hands frequently. If you do get sick, be careful about combining medications that contain acetaminophen. Other cold-weather concerns include dandruff from dry indoor air and fire or carbon monoxide poisoning from improper home heating.

But now we’ve got a fun cold-weather tip: Have a nice, hot mug of cocoa. Lona Sandon, a registered dietitian at UT Southwestern Medical Center, says a mug of dark hot chocolate has health benefits that are similar to a glass of red wine. Cocoa is a good source of disease-fighting antioxidants, and the closer to its natural form, the more benefits there are, so dark chocolate with less added milk and sugar is best. Just don’t cancel out the beneficial effects by topping your cocoa with whipped cream.


January 2007

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