Melanie R. Dorenkott, Laura E. Griffin, Katheryn M. Goodrich, Katherine A. Thompson-Witrick, Gabrielle Fundaro, Liyun Ye, Joseph R. Stevens, Mostafa Ali, Sean F. O’Keefe, Matthew W. Hulver and Andrew P. Neilson of the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in Blacksburg, Va., said in a study involving mice one ingredient was particularly promising in providing health benefits.
Cocoa, the basic ingredient of chocolate, is one of the most flavanol-rich foods. The researchers tested different kinds of flavanols on mice with different diets -- some high-fat, some low-fat and some high-fat diets with different flavanols. The mice were also tested for glucose tolerance, which might help in preventing type 2 diabetes.
"Oligomeric procyanidins appear to possess the greatest anti-obesity and anti-diabetic bioactivities of the flavanols in cocoa, particularly at the low doses employed for the present study," the researchers wrote in the study published in the Journal of Agricultural & Food Chemistry.