Drinking a cup of chocolate every day could increase the blood flow in those over 60 years of age, according to a recent study. The study, published in American heart Association's journal Circulation Research, was conducted on 44 people above 60 with common peripheral artery disease also known as 'PAD'.
Researchers said cocoa is rich with epicatechin, a compound that is also found in dark chocolate, which helps boost blood circulation. The lead author of the study is Mary McDermott, professor of medicine at Chicago’s Northwestern University. She said there are very few therapies available for PAD patients.
She added “Other than reduced blood flow, people with peripheral artery disease have been shown to have damaged mitochondria in their calf muscles". Mitochondria is referred to as the powerhouse of the cells in the human body. Those who consumed the cocoa, the study found, had increased mitochondrial activity and blood vessel density.