Chocolate Can Help Prevent Stroke

TORONTO – As if people needed any more reason to eat chocolate – now scientists find a bar a week could stop you from having a stroke.

A study of nearly 50,000 people found that those eating chocolate were 22 per cent less likely to suffer a stroke than those that didn’t.

And those who did suffer a stroke but had indulged in chocolate were 46 per cent less likely to die as a result.

The reason is believed to be that the food is rich in flavanoids, a healthy anti-oxidant, although researchers at the University of Toronto are keen to carry out extra studies.

Sarah Sahib, the study author of the University of Toronto in Canada, said: “More research is needed to determine whether chocolate truly lowers stroke risk, or whether healthier people are simply more likely to eat chocolate than others.”

She worked alongside colleague Dr Gustavo Saposnik and they found that 44,489 people who ate one serving of chocolate per week were 22 per cent less likely to have a stroke than people who ate no chocolate.

A second study found that 1,169 people who ate 50 grams of chocolate once a week were 46 percent less likely to die following a stroke than people who did not eat chocolate.

The researchers found only one additional relevant study in their search of all the available research. That study found no link between eating chocolate and risk of stroke or death.

However, Dr Saposnik warned: “Eating too much chocolate can make you fat as chocolate also contains saturated fats.

“Further investigation needs to be done. We need to study specific chocolate consumption.”

The findings are due to be presented at the American Academy of Neurology’s 62nd Annual Meeting in Toronto.

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