New chocolate slows signs of ageing

14:30 AEST Tue May 29 2012
Kimberly Gillan
Modified chocolate helps slow ageing process
Image: Getty Images

Eating chocolate may be the answer to slowing down the ageing process, according to UK scientists.

Researchers at biotechnology specialist Lyotec in Cambridge have created technology that transforms chocolate into an anti-ageing treatment.

By adding an ingredient called Coco-Lycosome, the scientists are able to help the body absorb 20 times more flavanol molecules from chocolate, which help improve skin oxygenation and slow down the ageing process.

The researchers say adding this ingredient means a small portion of modified chocolate has the same flavanol count as two regular, trans fat-free, chocolate bars.

"Two bars a day may be good news for chocoholics but not everybody loves chocolate that much," Lycotec founder Dr Ivan Petyaev told the UK's Grocer magazine. "Now everyone can benefit from the intrinsic values of cocoa flavanols without compromising their health and habits."

The additional ingredient doesn't alter the taste or texture of chocolate and it's ready for market now, according to Dr Petyaev.

Orla Hugeniot from Nutrition Australia says it's important people get flavanols from many food sources.

"We would much rather see people getting their flavanols from other foods such as fruits and vegies, as these foods contain a whole host of other important nutrients essential for good health," she says.

"Chocolate is high in saturated fat and sugar, both of which we should be eating less off. This is particularly important considering the current obesity epidemic in Australia."

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