Chocolate and Cholesterol
First, be sure to start with my Cholesterol FAQ if you don't know what cholesterol is. For example, there is good cholesterol and bad cholesterol. Also, cholesterol is made by the liver, so it is ONLY found in animal products you eat.
Now, on to chocolate! Here is a bar of 78% bittersweet chocolate. It has, as you can see, NO cholesterol at all. Many dark chocolates do not have cholesterol in them. That's because cocoa, coming from a cocoa bean, is a plant and not an animal!
In comparison, milk has 36mg of cholesterol per 8oz serving. Therefore chocolates made with milk - like a Hershey's milk chocolate bar - have cholesterol. The Hershey's example has 10mg of cholesterol in it.
Does any of this matter? Not really. Your body's cholesterol count really does NOT tend to come from the cholesterol you ingest! That only accounts for a tiny portion of the average person's cholesterol count. The majority of your cholesterol comes from the trans fats and some kinds of saturated fats you eat. Your body converts those types of fats into cholesterol in your body.
Now, how about chocolate and your body's cholesterol level? Your body's cholesterol reacts favorably to flavenoids. You've probably heard about how drinking red wine is good for you. Luckily, the same components are found in DARK chocolate! This Frey bar we're talking about is 78% cocoa so it's very dark. Therefore it actually helps to lower LDL cholesterol levels in your body.
It's important to note that chocolate does have saturated fats and sugars in it - so you can't eat 800 pounds of chocolate and be healthy! You want to eat in moderation. Still, you can see that chocolate does NOT necessarily have cholesterol in it - that would have to be added in. Also, you can see that chocolate can be good for your cholesterol levels!
Be sure to read up on:
Chocolate Health and Nutrition
Lisa Shea's Library of Low Carb Books
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