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More Chocolate, Less Stress

Is this too good to be true? Investigators at the Nestlé Research Center in Switzerland found that eating a little chocolate every day for two weeks reduces levels of stress hormones. The investigators recruited 30 volunteers, male and female ages 18-35, who were interviewed to assess their general anxiety. Those who rated themselves as highly stressed were then asked to consume 1.4 ounces of dark chocolate per day for two weeks. The researchers reported that eating the chocolate appeared to reduce levels of stress hormones in these volunteers. This isn't the first study to suggest that chocolate can ease emotional stress, but it is the first to identify the positive biochemical changes chocolate promotes. The study was published online on October 7, 2009 in the Journal of Proteome Research, a publication of the American Chemical Society. Other studies have shown that antioxidants in chocolate can make blood vessels more flexible and that the flavonoids chocolate contains can reduce the stickiness of platelets, inhibiting blood clotting and possibly reducing the risk of developing coronary artery blockages.

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Reader Comments (13)

I read this last year too and i thought oh this has to be too good to be true. i love dark chocolate, in fact the darker the better.

But if it is true that dark chocolate can reduce the stress hormones then this will be the best news i've heard for ages. plus it won't make you fat, as dark chocolate satisfies quicker so you tend to want less of it at once.

February 2, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKate

Absolutely true. Dark chocolate is so good for your health, too.

February 2, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJanet Rudolph

The study was sponsored by Nestle and involved too few participants to reach any true correlation. I'm concerned that some highly-stressed individuals may experience weight gain over several weeks if daily does of chocolate are consumed. Wouldn't daily exercise be more health beneficial?

February 2, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLaura

Raw, cold-pressed, dark-chocolate with Acai and blueberies.

Incredibly healthy and delicious!

February 2, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterShannon

I would not trust a study from an entity which has a stake in the result. Nestle did the study. If Stanford, UC Berkeley, Mayo Clinic or Harvard School of Medicine, for example, confirmed it, THEN I might believe it.

February 2, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSusan

Though i think it may relieve some forms of stress (I enjoy a few bites when distressed). I think we should not forget that chocolate is a common offender of heartburn, insomnia and can aggravate premenstrual problems.

February 2, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJoe

Yay for chocolate. I'm a fan of organic Raw vegan chocolate and make treats at home all the time. :)

February 2, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKRISTEN'S RAW

I have eaten one ounce, (3pieces) of Dove Dark chocolate for the past two years. I am 59 years old. Just had a complete physical. I was told I do not have high cholestoral, blood levels are perfect, blood pressure is where it should be, well in general, I am healthy Yaay me. As soon as I read that Dark Chocolate was good for my heart I was hooked. It is my morning treat with a cup of coffee.

February 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterDebbie Robinson

I love chocolate! Always try to get the best organic stuff I can find! I follow a 'Almost' raw diet (only adding organic eggs and Brown rice to my fruit and veg diet). Recently I heard a podcast with Donna Gates saying that we NEED to remove sugar completely from our system (including fruit sugars!) as it causes our blood to be acidic and diseases like cancer love an acidic blood stream! I'm confused! Does that mean now, I can't eat chocolate anymore!? She even said Brown rice is full of sugars!! Information overload or what!

February 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSimon

Nestle research center.... hmmm

February 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTessa

Tessa and all who posted about the study being from Nestle--just remember that Dr. Weil says over 70% dark chocolate so that should help calm any fears?

February 5, 2010 | Unregistered

I cannot think of anything better than chocolate as being good for you. I do agree that Nestle being the sponsor is a bit questionable but I do believe that other studies have shown similar results. As we combat more and more stress, it is good to find different ways to cope.

September 14, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMichell

If I don't l o v e chocolate as everybody else does, do I have a problem? I mean, why I don't have the same necessity as most people does?

July 30, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterCynthia

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