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Company Introduces New and Healthier Dark Chocolate

Update Date: Oct 07, 2013 12:14 PM EDT

For people who love to indulge in sweets but do not want to pack on the extra pounds, nibbling on dark chocolate could be the answer. Based from many studies, researchers have found that dark chocolate, when consumed in moderation, can be very good for the body. Not only does it satisfy the sugar craving, dark chocolate is rich in antioxidants. Now, a new company is reporting that its latest dark chocolate product will have even more health benefits.

According to the Swiss company, Barry Callebaut, its latest innovation called Acticoa could be available in a few months. Acticoa, which is dark chocolate, will be made with flavanols, which is a plant chemical that boosts health. Normally, cocoa beans are high in flavanols before they are processed to make chocolate. Once the cocoa beans are put through the processing technique, they become stripped of the health-boosting chemicals. Barry Callebaut has now made some adjustments in order to preserve some of the flavanols during the process of making chocolate.

"This is not about artificially adding a nutrient - it is about preserving what is already present in cocoa," Marijke De Brouwer, a spokesman for the company, said.

Based on tests, Acticoa can improve blood vessels' elasticity by one to two percent. Even though this percentage might seem minuscule, research has suggested that a one percent improvement in elasticity can lead to better blood flow and lower one's risk of cardiovascular complications by eight percent. Once the chocolate goes on sale, the wrapper will state that "cocoa flavanols help maintain the elasticity of blood vessels, which contributes to normal blood flow." This label was approved by the European Commission.

Even though this chocolate will have its healthy and natural chemical components, consumers must remember that the product is chocolate after all and can be detrimental to overall health if eaten in excess.

"We must always remember that chocolate is more or less 50 percent sugar and 50 percent fat," commented Angus Kennedy from the trade magazine, Kennedy's Confection. "If you want to increase your blood flow, you'd probably go for a jog or take a walk in the park."

Barry Callebaut makes around 1,400,000 tons of chocolate every year and supplies to many household brands, such as Cadbury's and Thorntons. 

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