Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Chocolate Diet : Eat Chocolate, Stay Thin

Eat Chocolate to Lower Fat / BMI

More reasons to include chocolate in your gluten-free diet

I love chocolate! And when I read about the health benefits of including chocolate in my gluten-free diet, I can enjoy this delicious treat even more. The latest scientific study results that caught my attention were about how people who frequently ate chocolate had a lower body mass index (BMI) than people who did not. As always, exercise also helps with this outcome, but the contribution that dietary chocolate made to the BMI results is quite nice.

This research (published in the March 26 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine) comes from a study that enrolled more than 1000 healthy men and women, average age of 57 years (with no pre-existing heart disease, diabetes or cholesterol problems), to measure the effects of cholesterol-lowering statin drugs, while a second study simultaneously assessed how often participants consumed chocolate.

The chocolate-consumption portion of the study showed that the typical participant consumed chocolate an average of twice weekly while exercising approximately 3.5 times per week. But, the interesting part is how those that consumed chocolate more frequently had lower BMI numbers. Perhaps this is my secret to staying thin? I exercise vigorously at least 3 days/week (weights, resistance-training) and try to walk, bike, hike or such on other days; and, I eat chocolate (or cocoa) nearly every day. I realize that my own results do not comprise a "scientific study", but it is working for me, which is great given my love of chocolate!

The first question about chocolate diet results is usually: what makes it work? Generally most research points to the abundance of antioxidants and flavanols and other compounds in chocolate that may promote weight loss. And, cocoa has caffeine in it as well as theobromine — a related, though slightly weaker, alkaloid that can act as both a stimulant and a vasodilator — perhaps those help as well. Whatever the root-cause for its diet assistance, the fact that cocoa-products taste fantastic are what matters most to me :)

Related Studies Promoting Health-Benefits of Chocolate

This is just one of many studies over the years showing scientific evidence that cocoa / chocolate (especially dark-chocolate) is beneficial to our health. And, this is just a few weeks after another (semi-related) study showed that eating chocolate and dessert items with breakfast helped people lose more weight. Chocolate remains the constant factor in many of these studies (accompanied by exercise, of course), and surely merits attention by anyone that is looking for beneficial diet items to include in their weight-loss plans.

I personally need no further incentive: I will continue to consume cocoa and/or chocolate along with my gluten-free diet and workout plans!

Continue to read this Gluten-Free Blog for all sorts of gluten-free recipes, product-reviews, and related information. In addition, visit my Gluten-Free Recipes Site where many of the recipes I have featured on this blog are available


gluten free gift said...

I too eat chocolate every day - guilt free! Good chocolate equates with a vitamin supplement in my mind. My fave is at LEAST 70% cocoa... and ideally with a hint of chili in it. This study should not be confused with eating "candy bars" ... which I assure you, will plump you up!

A Gluten Freestyle said...

Green & Black's 85% all the way! Plus it definitely puts a smile on your face daily too!

Make your own damn dinner said...

Chocolate is definitely good for the soul!

Wendy H said...

This is good news for me! Thanks for posting this.

Amanda said...

bummer. I rarely can eat chocolate. If I have any, it's maybe one milk chocolate kiss. It's the only kind I can stand and even that's too much for me.