Daily Consumption of Chocolate Rich in Flavonoids Decreases Cellular Genotoxicity and Improves Biochemical Parameters of Lipid and Glucose Metabolism
Facultad de Ciencias Químicas e Ingeniería, Universidad Autónoma de Baja California—Campus Tijuana, Calzada Universidad 14418, Parque Industrial Internacional Tijuana, C.P. 22390 Tijuana, Mexico
Laboratoire Écotoxiquegénomique, Eau Terre Environment, Institut national de la Recherche Scientifique (INRS-ETE), Rue 490 Couronne, Quebec City, QC G1K 9A9, Canada
Department of Cellular and Structural Biology, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, 7703 Floyd Curl Drive, San Antonio, TX 78229, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Jianbo Wan and Ligen Lin
Molecules 2018, 23(9), 2220; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23092220
Received: 20 July 2018 / Revised: 24 August 2018 / Accepted: 26 August 2018 / Published: 1 September 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Natural Products in Prevention and Treatment of Metabolic Syndrome)
In recent years, the incidence of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease, obesity, and diabetes has increased largely worldwide. In the present work, we evaluated the genoprotective effect of the consumption of flavonoids-rich chocolate on 84 young volunteers. Biochemical indicators related to the prevention and treatment of cardiovascular risk and metabolic syndrome were also determined. A randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind study was performed in the Autonomous University of Baja California. The treatments comprised the daily consumption of either 2 g of dark chocolate containing 70% cocoa, or 2 g of milk chocolate, for 6 months. The total amount of phenolic compounds and flavonoids was determined in both types of chocolate. Anthropometrical and Biochemical parameters were recorded prior to and after the study. The evaluation of the genotoxicity in buccal epithelial cells was performed throughout the duration of the study. Flavonoids from cocoa in dark chocolate significantly prevented DNA damage, and improved the nucleus integrity of cells. This effect could be related to the antioxidant capacity of the dark chocolate that decreased cellular stress. Biochemical parameters (total cholesterol, triglycerides, and LDL-cholesterol level in blood) and anthropometrical parameters (waist circumference) were improved after six months of daily intake of 2 g of dark chocolate with a 70% of cocoa.