Chocolate Shops Portland OR

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Fred Meyer
(503) 872-3300
3805 Se Hawthorne Boulevard
Portland, OR
 
Walgreens
940 Se 39Th Ave
Portland, OR
 
Safeway
1303 Nw Lovejoy St
Portland, OR
 
Safeway
(503) 528-0500
1100 Ne Broadway
Portland, OR
 
Walgreens
1620 Ne. Grand Avenue
Portland, OR
 
Safeway
(503) 232-5539
2800 S.E. Hawthorne
Portland, OR
 
Safeway
(503) 205-1849
1030 Sw Jefferson
Portland, OR
 
Fred Meyer
(503) 273-2004
100 Nw 20Th Place
Portland, OR
 
Fred Meyer
(503) 280-1300
3030 Ne Weidler Street
Portland, OR
 
Safeway
(503) 772-4440
3930 Se Powell Blvd
Portland, OR
 

Chocolate Health Benefits

Provided by: 

By Dan Lukaczer, ND

Q I keep hearing chocolate is good for you. I want to believe this, but is it true?

A My answer is an unequivocal yes and no. The cocoa found in chocolate has numerous health benefits (the darker the chocolate, the better). But be warned—it’s only the cocoa, not all the sugar and fat that comes packaged with it, that has health advantages.

Cocoa comes from the cocoa bean, grown on the cocoa tree (Theobroma cacao). The beans have a variety of active phytochemicals that demonstrate healthy effects. Some of the more important are polyphenols, compounds best known for their antioxidant properties. In the most recent study I’ve seen published, a small group of healthy volunteers who ate 100 g of dark chocolate, containing approximately 500 mg polyphenols, were compared to those who ate 100 g of white chocolate, which contains no polyphenols. (White chocolate is really not “chocolate” at all. It is simply the fat—cocoa butter—from cocoa beans mixed with milk and other ingredients.) The researchers found that the dark, but not the white, chocolate decreased blood pressure and improved insulin sensitivity (poor insulin sensitivity has been linked to diabetes and heart disease).

You’ve also probably heard people say that chocolate makes them feel better. There may be something to that as well. Cocoa also contains other compounds called methylxanthines that seem to improve moods. Another study showed that subjects eating dark or milk chocolate versus those eating white chocolate (which contains no methylxanthines) showed a positive mood-altering effect. These phytochemicals may even go through breast milk. Mothers who reported eating chocolate daily rated the temperament of their 6-month-old infants more positively in terms of crying and fussing. The bottom line is that your chocolate indulgence does come with some health benefits. However, because chocolate also comes with lots of fat and sugar, you should limit intake.

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