Because of its high sugar and fat content, chocolate is known as a fattening food. But a study published in the specialist magazine “Archives of Internal Medicine” shows: Chocolate shop lovers are apparently thinner than people who spurn sweets.
More than 1,000 women and men aged 20 and 85 years had given researchers from the University of California information about their diet. In addition to the question of how often they consumed chocolate, questions were also asked about physical activity as well as height and weight. This was used to calculate the body mass index (BMI) of the study participants. Although the chocolate eaters ate more calories and fat on average, they had a lower BMI than the study participants who rarely or not at all consumed chocolate. They neither saved more calories in other parts of their diet nor did they exercise more often. The Californian researchers conclude that it is not only the amount of calories consumed that plays a role, but also which foods these calories come from. Previous studies have already shown that chocolate has a positive effect on the metabolism. According to researchers, dark chocolate in particular, which has a high cocoa content, should contain ingredients that counteract cell damage, lower cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases. The study did not ask whether the subjects consumed light or dark chocolate types. Although the chocolate lovers showed a lower BMI, the study was unable to prove a causal relationship between frequent chocolate consumption and low body weight. However, the unexpected results of the study are reason enough for further investigations to follow.