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FirstAssist reveals the health benefits of Chocolate

FirstAssist, leading health and wellbeing provider, brings news that dark chocolate may protect against heart disease and cancer, but only in moderation as part of a healthy diet. New research from scientists reveal that dark chocolate has antioxidant properties, bringing chocolate lovers the news they have been longing to hear this Easter.

Antioxidants are substances that counteract the damaging effects of oxidation in human and animal tissue which can lead to cancer and heart disease.

The bad news is that milk chocolate does not have the same health benefits as dark chocolate. FirstAssist reminds people that five portions of fruit and vegetables a day are the best way to keep heart disease and cancer at bay.

Twelve healthy volunteers were given the dream task of eating 100 grams of dark chocolate and 100 grams of milk chocolate by researchers at the University of Glasgow. The results showed that after eating plain chocolate, antioxidant levels in the blood were boosted by 20%. Milk chocolate had no effect, and neither did dark chocolate when eaten with a glass of milk. It is thought dairy products may inhibit the absorption of antioxidants in chocolate and other foods.

Easter is just around the corner and this news will be music to the ears of dark chocolate lovers,Alistair Sclare PMI Product Manager for FirstAssist comments. The new found health benefits will make chocolate an even worthier office snack for workers needing an afternoon pick me up. However, milk and dark chocolate is high in saturated fat, so whatever your preference it is best eaten in moderation and a piece of fruit is always the best option.

Employers can help their staff stay healthy by providing an office fruit bowl and removing vending machines selling unhealthy snacks and sugary drinks. Discounted membership at health clubs is a real incentive for employees to stay fit and shower facilities at the office make cycling to work a viable option. Failing that, get a spot of exercise by using the stairs instead of the lift. But if you really can't resist, maybe opt for a smaller egg this year as well as plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables.

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