While chocolate is liked by many, most of us are not enlightened on its constituent called flavonoids which have been known to provide health benefits in previous studies. As for women suffering from type 2 diabetes, a flavonoid-rich diet may restrain heart diseases, assert professionals from the University of East Anglia.

Flavonoids are mostly found in berries, chocolate and tea. In this trial, about 93 post-menopausal women diagnosed with type 2 diabetes participated. While half of the set received 2 bars of chocolate laced with flavonoids each day, the control group was exposed to chocolate comprising placebo.

The outcomes showed that those who consumed extra flavonoids apparently faced 3.4% lower risk for cardiovascular events till the successive decade. Experts consider this result to be crucial in terms of dietary interventions. Moreover, the subjects’ insulin and cholesterol levels also seemed to be decreased substantially.

“These results are significant from a public health perspective because they provide further concrete evidence that diet has a beneficial clinical effect over and above conventional drug treatment,” commented lead researcher Prof Aedin Cassidy of the Department of Nutrition, Norwich Medical School at UEA.

The flavonoids used in this study comprised 2 sub classes, flavan-3-ols commonly found in tea or cocoa and isoflavones usually seen in soy. However, the scientists caution that the findings do not encourage diabetic women to consume more chocolate in any way. This is presumably because commercially available chocolates may not produce the same effect as the ones used in the analysis.

The trial, ‘Chronic ingestion of flavon-3-ols and isoflavones improves insulin sensitivity and lipoprotein status and attenuates estimated 10-year CVD risk in medicated postmenopausal women with type 2 diabetes: a one year double-blind randomized controlled trial’ is published in the journal, Diabetes Care.