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Old 01-22-2008, 04:00 PM
Iggy Dalrymple's Avatar
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Default Sorry? Chocolate may increase risk of osteoporosis

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Chocolate may increase risk of osteoporosis

There's increasing evidence that chocolate is good for the heart, but new research suggests it may not be so great for the bones.

Older women who ate chocolate every day had weaker, thinner bones than their peers, who indulged less frequently, and the difference didn't appear to be due to overall dietary habits, said Dr. Jonathan M. Hodgson and colleagues of the University of Western Australia School of Medicine and Pharmacology in Perth.
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Dr. Cinque's comments: A difference of 3.1 percent may not sound like much, but in the realm of bone density, it is significant. There has been so much good reporting about chocolate lately that this article really jumped out at me. And many companies have gotten on the bandwagon and started offering cocoa supplements. My immediate reaction was that it is probably premature to start taking chocolate in pill form. One thing that Dr. John McDougall often points out is that people love to hear good news about their bad habits. Hence, positive stories about coffee, chocolate, and particularly alcohol, always make headline news. In this case, the jury is still out as to how chocolate may be damaging bones. There is the oxalic acid, but then again oxalic acid is widely distributed in foods, the highest sources being spinach, beet greens, swiss chard, rhubarb, unmilled sesame seeds, and the grain amaranth. But virtually all fruits and vegetables contain some oxalic acid, and the body also produces some metabolically. So we shouldn't be too quick to malign chocolate because of that, and my hunch is that it's not a major factor. By the way, coffee is higher in oxalic acid than chocolate. And then there is all the refined sugar in chocolate. Chocolate is so bitter in its natural state that they have to add a ton of sugar to cover it up. Put it this way: there is more sugar in chocolate than there is cocoa. And yes, refined sugar is bad for your bones, no doubt about it. So for me, I am content to leave chocolate alone. I don't take it as supplement and I don't take it as food. And as far as satisfying your sweet tooth, there are so many wholesome ways to do it within the realm of fruits and vegetables.
http://www.1to1vitamins.com/news/2008/artl6702.html
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Old 01-22-2008, 04:30 PM
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I find it quite easy to find and consume 100% pure cocoa without any added sugar.

It's also important to note that cocoa is a rich-source of magnesium ... which is good for the bones.

I'll await additional research on this matter before I give-up on this health-promoting food.

Also, take note of this:

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Women who ate chocolate every day weighed less and, on average, had lower a body mass index (BMI), the ratio of height to weight, a formula frequently used to determine if an individual is fat or thin. The chocolate eaters also consumed more calories and had a higher socioeconomic status.
The skinnier you are ... the less resistance you place on your bones. Thinner women are often at greater-risk for bone-density issues. This is just one potential contributing factor to the finding of this population study.

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Body weight, is an important determinant of bone density. The skeleton of heavy individuals tends to benefit from it's increased load-carrying role. Studies have demonstrated that body weight is positively correlated with bone mineral density, and that weight loss is associated with bone loss. (Increasing calcium intake appears to reduce the bone loss that accompanies weight loss.)

Weight loss in older individuals has been linked to an increase in fracture risk. Researchers found that "extreme" weight loss (10% or more) beginning at age fifty, increased the risk of hip fracture in older women and men. Conversely, a weight gain of 10% or more decreased hip fracture risk. Such studies suggest that maintaining weight in later life may have a protective effect on bone
http://arthritis.about.com/od/nutrit...oporosis_2.htm

Last edited by Harry Hirsute; 01-22-2008 at 04:37 PM.
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Old 01-27-2008, 01:50 PM
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Why is this the dumbest study ever done? Because- I hope you're sitting down- the researchers didn't bother to distinguish among the types of chocolate consumed!

Yes, you heard right. So what the researchers essentially found was that women who eat candy on a daily basis have weaker bones than those who don't. There was absolutely no distinction made between a Hershey's Milk Chocolate bar (which has virtually no protective flavanols) and an 80% cocoa dark chocolate treat.

This is why people go nuts when they hear nutrition research and feel like experts don't know what they're talking about. Many studies say chocolate is great (for lowering blood pressure among other things) and now this study says it's bad. No wonder the public gets confused.

But the truth is, they're using the word chocolate to talk about two entirely different substances. A candy bar with tons of sugar, wax, emulsifiers, chocolate flavoring and no naturally occurring phenols to speak of is not the chocolate we mean when we talk about high cocoa dark chocolate, even though these researchers didn't seem to notice the difference, and referred to both of them as "chocolate".

Since the researchers didn't bother to find out, let me venture a wild guess. The ladies in this study were not consuming 70% cocoa dark chocolate daily, they were eating candy bars. Just a wild guess.

The results of this study should have been reported this way: Sugar contributes to weak bones.

This study actually has nothing to do with the kind of chocolate I wrote about in The 150 Healthiest Foods on Earth, and that you've correctly heard is a very healthy food. It has to do with candy and sugar. It's unbelievable that the researchers didn't know enough to distinguish the two.
http://www.jonnybowden.com/2008/01/c...y-of-week.html
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