You'd have to be nuttier than an Almond Joy to believe chocolate bars can make you healthy -- either that, or an investor in candy companies.
Not sure which category the researchers behind the latest study fall into, but it would have to be one or the other. How else would you explain their claim that chocolate in any form -- including white chocolate, which technically isn't even chocolate -- can slash your risk of heart disease, strokes, and diabetes?
Too good to be true? Sorry, chocoholics -- but of course it is.
The "new" study isn't really a new study at all. It's just a loose hodgepodge of data from seven older studies -- observational studies (not clinical trials) from Japan, Iceland, Sweden, the Netherlands, Germany, and North America.
Notice something here? Japan, Iceland, Sweden, the Netherlands and Germany are among the healthiest nations on the planet -- so chocolate eaters there are of course going to be healthier overall, skewing the numbers right off the bat.
At least three of the studies involved patients on meds along with their candy, and none of the studies distinguished types of chocolate consumed. So sugar-packed chocolate milk, for example, carried the same weight scientifically as a much-better-for-you fine dark chocolate.
In other words, any conclusions from the analysis in the British Medical Journal are purely coincidental.
This is exactly the kind of study I warned you about over the summer when I wrote about the health benefits real, raw cocoa -- one of nature's true superfoods.
Real cocoa can help protect your heart and arteries, boost your immune system, and even fight cancer. But no matter what the new study says, you won't get any of that from a candy bar.
The only healthy way to get your chocolate fix is to go straight to the source: raw fermented cocoa beans or powder. If you can't eat the beans straight -- and not too many people can -- blend the powder until it's fine enough to dissolve in your coffee.
For more on real, raw chocolate, read this.