Imagine going to the doctor’s office and getting a prescription for chocolate. Milk chocolate, chocolate with almonds, liquor-laced chocolate—the list goes on and on. Would you be interested, or would you think your doctor is having you on? A new study published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology shows that, while this may be a bit of an exaggeration, eating chocolate may lower your chances of getting a stroke.

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This isn't the first study to suggest that chocolate could be good for you, though. Previous studies have linked it to lowered emotional stress levels as well as a decreased risk of heart disease. Studying more than 33,000 Swedish women, researchers were able to find evidence suggesting it might be a good idea to add chocolate to the list of things to stock in your medicine cabinet. Using data from a mammography study, the study authors measured the number of chocolates each participant consumed in 1997. They then traced the number of stroke cases that occurred in the decade that followed.

Based on the results, women who ate the most chocolates were less likely to suffer from stroke. This group had a ratio of 2.5 strokes per 1,000 women each year. Meanwhile, those who ate the least chocolates reported a ratio of 7.8 strokes per 1,000 women.

Unfortunately, the study is inconclusive, and more studies will need to be done on the subject. In the meantime, if you must eat chocolate, eat moderately, and go for the dark ones because they contain more cocoa and less sugar and are relatively healthier than other kinds of chocolate.

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For more on chocolate, try these:

(Photo source: sxc.hu)

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