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Thursday, November 12, 2009

More Studies Are Needed

As a student, I would often have a research project which ultimately required me to comment in the conclusion of the assembled paper that "more studies are needed" to prove or disprove any number of facets of the subject matter researched. It is sort of a obligatory statement for students and precisely what any actual scientist, social or medical, should make when presenting new information gathered from human studies. After all, science has to be careful when making absolute pronouncements about anything that hasn't been proven or observed over time. Now, as for the matter of testing a theory, the scientific process must be adhered to religiously.

More studies are needed to confirm the findings of Dr. Ramon Estruch of the University of Barcelona that chocolate milk may reduce inflammation, as reported on by the New York Times. I'll be happy to confirm the scientific findings myself. Hmmm, low-fat milk and cocoa twice a day..........and it might raise my good HDL cholesterol, too!

Money quote:

Scientists in Barcelona, Spain, recruited 47 volunteers ages 55 and
older who were at risk for heart disease. Half were given 20-gram
sachets of soluble cocoa powder to drink with skim milk twice a day,
while the rest drank plain skim milk. After one month, the groups were
switched.

Blood tests found that after participants drank chocolate milk twice a day for four weeks, they had significantly lower levels of several inflammatory biomarkers, though some markers of cellular inflammation remained unchanged.

Participants also had significantly higher levels of good HDL cholesterol after completing the chocolate milk regimen, according to the study, which appears in the November issue of The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition and is already online.

“Since atherosclerosis is a low-grade inflammatory disease of the arteries,
regular cocoa intake seems to prevent or reduce” it, said Dr. Ramón
Estruch of the University of Barcelona, the paper’s senior author,
adding that more studies were needed.




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