A small chocolate treat may have heart benefits

Bryan Aldrige

September 1, 2010

A nine-year study of women aged 48 to 83 has found that eating chocolate several times a week may have substantial benefits for the heart, even if eating too much chocolate can be detrimental to health, according to AARP.org.

These findings came after the questionnaires of approximately 32,000 women were reviewed by researchers from Harvard University and the Institute of Environmental Medicine in Sweden. Around two-thirds to an ounce of chocolate a week seemed to reduce the risk of heart failure by 32 percent.

Participants who ate chocolate every day, however, didn’t appear to receive the same benefits and lead researcher Murray Mittleman claims that it may be due to the fact that too much of the dessert food can add extra calories that lead to weight gain.

Diet also has an impact on chocolate’s efficacy. “Chocolate is not magical and does not work in isolation,” Linda Van Horn, a professor of preventive medicine, told the news source. She recommends adding chocolate to a diet high in fiber, fruits, vegetables and fish.

A healthy diet can lead to a healthier lifestyle, but experts recommend that older adults who are living alone should always have a way to contact doctors or neighbors in the case of an unexpected injury. A senior alert system can help provide a way for seniors to age independently and safely.