Irish Nutrition and Dietetic Institute, Ashgrove House, Kill Avenue, Dun Laoghaire, Co. Dublin. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
CHOCOLATE: FACTS AND FICTION
Most people enjoy chocolate and will indulge over Easter. It may taste good, but what about
chocolates effect on health? Here are some facts about chocolate that you may not know…..
Chocolate and saturated fats
While chocolate contains some saturated fats, studies have shown that not all types of saturated
fats raise blood cholesterol levels. For example, stearic acid is a saturated fat that makes up one-
third of the fat in chocolate. Stearic acid does not raise blood cholesterol levels. In addition, oleic
acid, a monounsaturated fat also found in olive oil, makes up one-third of the fat in chocolate.
Eating foods with oleic acid as part of a healthful eating plan has been shown to be beneficial for
Chocolate and caffeine
Chocolate contains very little caffeine.
Chocolate and polyhenols
Chocolate is made from cocoa beans which come from the cocoa tree Theobroma cacao. As a
result, chocolate contains many of the same healthy compounds as plants, including minerals
(copper, iron, Zinc and magnesium) and specific antioxidants called polyhenols. Polyphenols also
help lower LDL cholesterol.
Chocolate and allergies
Allergies to chocolate are very uncommon. If you have been diagnosed with food allergies by a
board-certified allergist, you must read labels and avoid the foods or ingredients that cause the
Chocolate and diabetes
Diabetes occurs when a person’s body doesn’t properly regulate blood sugars (blood glucose).
Eating certain foods, even simple sugar, does not cause diabetes. All people with diabetes should
follow their physicians’ and dietitians’ instructions for meal planning, physical activity, blood glucose
monitoring, and medication. If you have diabetes, ask your health professional how incorporate
chocolate into your eating plan.
Chocolate and h