Now that we’re into February, and the detoxes are well and truly underway, we’re starting to really miss the no-holds-barred treat-fests of Christmas. It seems that mums-to-be have the perfect excuse to ease up on the treat-guilt however, in light of this latest research report.
According to a team of scientists, eating chocolate while pregnant actually benefits your unborn baby!
No, this is not a drill. A team of experts recently presented evidence to the Society for Maternal-Foetal Medicine, claiming that eating chocolate on a daily basis while pregnant can have a positive impact on your baby’s growth and overall development.
Here comes the science: the findings all come back to flavanol, a substance found in cocoa, which apparently improves blood flow in our bodies. The direct result of this increased blood flow is that it can boost our babies’ healthy development, even decreasing the risk of pre-eclampsia.
As part of their research, the team carried out an experiment on 129 women, between 11 and 14 weeks pregnant, over a 12-week period.
There were two groups involved in the experiment: the first group, who were given 30g of low-flavanol chocolate every day; and the second group, who were given 30g of high-flavanol chocolate daily.
When measuring their results, the team looked at the impact on pre-eclampsia risk, gestational hypertension, and birth and placenta weight.
The area of greatest improvement was the mother’s blood flow, which increased with a daily snack of the sweet treat.
Answering every mum’s secret prayer, study researcher Emmanuel Bujold said: “This study indicates that chocolate could have a positive impact on placenta and foetal growth and development, and that chocolate’s effects are not solely and directly due to flavanol content.”
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