The Checkup: Eat More Chocolate (Really!) to Lower BMI
• Confession: I’m not a huge chocolate eater; I’ve just never taken to the stuff. But I imagine that many of you are, so here’s some good news: A study out yesterday found regular chocolate consumption might help fight weight gain. A study of a thousand men and women found that those who consumed chocolate more often during the week had a lower body mass index (BMI), a measure of body fat, than those who ate it less frequently. The study also considered people’s dietary and exercise habits and found that, despite taking in more calories and saturated fat, the chocolate eaters didn’t exercise more than the non-chocolate eaters—yet their BMIs were still lower. While the study didn’t distinguish between dark and milk chocolate, the authors are quick to caution that you should limit your chocolate intake to an ounce of dark chocolate or a scoop of cocoa powder a day. But if that doesn’t do enough to satisfy your craving (I don’t blame you), who’s going to begrudge you a couple Hershey’s Kisses? Here’s my question: When are scientists going to start researching the health benefits of blueberry pie or banana bread pudding? Because those are desserts I can happily put away a blink.
• Pills may not be the best answer for Type 2 diabetes, according to a new study. Believe it or not, researchers found that weight-loss surgery might be the best medicine.
• Are you a runner? Want to know if you’re at risk for runner’s knee (patellofemoral pain syndrome)? Researchers may have found a relatively simple test.