Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

A Chocolate Snack Can Lower Cholesterol Levels

09.11.2004


New research presented today at the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions reveals that plant sterols from soy added to a cocoa-based snack bar can significantly reduce cholesterol levels. This study demonstrates how certain plant nutrients can promote heart health when included in snack foods. Based on this research and decades of research on cocoa, Mars Incorporated has developed a new cocoa-based, sterol-containing snack bar, CocoaVia(tm).



This clinical research demonstrates for the first time, consumers can eat 2 CocoaVia bars a day and see significant reduction in their cholesterol levels. This is also the first time that the combination of cocoa flavanols and plant sterols are offered in a snack bar.

Researchers at University of California, Davis have already demonstrated that certain cocoa and chocolates contain naturally occurring heart healthy plant nutrients called flavanols. The study presented today examined the effect of a cocoa-based sterol containing snack food among people with high cholesterol levels. Including plant sterols from soy in the diet has been recommended by the American Heart Association and the National Cholesterol Education Program as one lifestyle change that can lower cholesterol levels significantly. In 2002, the Food and Drug Administration approved a health claim for sterols’ ability to lower heart disease risk by lowering cholesterol.


In this study, one group of 35 participants received a placebo (non-sterol containing) snack bar (the control group) twice a day while the other group of 35 participants ate the plant sterol-containing bar twice daily (the treatment group). Study participants had their cholesterol levels checked twice at the beginning of the study, again at the mid-point of the study and twice at the end of the six-week study period.

When the study began, participants had an elevated fasting total and LDL cholesterol >240 mg/dl and >160 mg/dl, respectively. At the end of the study, total and LDL cholesterol and the ratio of total:HDL cholesterol decreased significantly by 4.7%, 6% and 7.4%, respectively in those who consumed the plant sterol enriched snack bars. Plasma lipids did not change in the control group. There were no changes in body weight, blood pressure or HDL cholesterol in either treatment group.

“Plant sterols are a clinically proven ingredient that lowers cholesterol,” said Catherine Kwik-Uribe, Ph.D, Research Chemist for Mars, Incorporated, one of the study authors. “Physicians and cardiologists have recommended the sterol-containing spreads to their heart health concerned patients. Now this research shows that patients have another food option with not just the sterol benefits, but with the multiple cardiovascular benefits of cocoa flavanols and great taste, too. ”

The cocoa in the snack bar tested is rich in naturally occurring plant nutrients called flavanols. Similar to the antioxidants in tea and red wine, studies suggest that cocoa flavanols may have positive effects on heart health by reducing oxidation of LDL cholesterol, promoting healthy blood pressure, making blood vessels more pliable and maintaining healthy blood flow. Because flavanols may be destroyed during standard processing, not all cocoas contain much of the naturally occurring flavanols. However, Cocoapro®, developed by Mars, Incorporated, is the only proprietary and patented process that retains much of the natural cocoa flavanols and their potential healthful qualities. Cocoapro® cocoa was used in the bars in this study.

Mars, Incorporated used the knowledge gained from an extensive science program on cocoa flavanols for the past decade and an expertise in making snackfoods to create the CocoaVia Snack, which was used in this study. The CocoaVia bar combines plant sterols and cocoa flavanols in a complete heart healthy package.

Masterfoods USA, the United States food and snack operations of Mars, Incorporated, is one of the world’s leading food manufacturers. For nearly 15 years, Masterfoods USA has researched cocoa flavanols to identify and quantify the flavanols in cocoa and their impact on heart health. As a leader in cocoa research and confections, Masterfoods makes cocoa that provides consumers a consistently high level of naturally occurring cocoa flavanols. Masterfoods’ family of products offers a variety of foods that give consumers taste and nutrition—everything from UNCLE BEN’S® Whole Grain Brown Rice to M&M’S® Brand Chocolate Candies to CocoaVia Snack Bars. Headquartered in Hackettstown, NJ, Masterfoods USA employs more than 7,000 associates in the United States, with 15 manufacturing facilities nationwide.

| newswise

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Satellites, airport visibility readings shed light on troops' exposure to air pollution
09.12.2016 | Veterans Affairs Research Communications

nachricht Oxygen can wake up dormant bacteria for antibiotic attacks
08.12.2016 | Penn State

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Electron highway inside crystal

Physicists of the University of Würzburg have made an astonishing discovery in a specific type of topological insulators. The effect is due to the structure of the materials used. The researchers have now published their work in the journal Science.

Topological insulators are currently the hot topic in physics according to the newspaper Neue Zürcher Zeitung. Only a few weeks ago, their importance was...

Im Focus: Significantly more productivity in USP lasers

In recent years, lasers with ultrashort pulses (USP) down to the femtosecond range have become established on an industrial scale. They could advance some applications with the much-lauded “cold ablation” – if that meant they would then achieve more throughput. A new generation of process engineering that will address this issue in particular will be discussed at the “4th UKP Workshop – Ultrafast Laser Technology” in April 2017.

Even back in the 1990s, scientists were comparing materials processing with nanosecond, picosecond and femtosesecond pulses. The result was surprising:...

Im Focus: Shape matters when light meets atom

Mapping the interaction of a single atom with a single photon may inform design of quantum devices

Have you ever wondered how you see the world? Vision is about photons of light, which are packets of energy, interacting with the atoms or molecules in what...

Im Focus: Novel silicon etching technique crafts 3-D gradient refractive index micro-optics

A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.

Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...

Im Focus: Quantum Particles Form Droplets

In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.

“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ICTM Conference 2017: Production technology for turbomachine manufacturing of the future

16.11.2016 | Event News

Innovation Day Laser Technology – Laser Additive Manufacturing

01.11.2016 | Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

Researchers identify potentially druggable mutant p53 proteins that promote cancer growth

09.12.2016 | Life Sciences

Scientists produce a new roadmap for guiding development & conservation in the Amazon

09.12.2016 | Ecology, The Environment and Conservation

Satellites, airport visibility readings shed light on troops' exposure to air pollution

09.12.2016 | Health and Medicine

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>