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Plasma antioxidants (communication arising)

Health benefits of eating chocolate?


In assessing whether or not a compound or food acts as an antioxidant in vivo, a conventional approach is to monitor biological markers of oxidative damage in response to the intervention1. Another is to measure the change in total plasma antioxidant capacity, as investigated by Serafini et al.2 in relation to the consumption of chocolate in the presence and absence of milk. The implications of the authors' finding that eating chocolate causes an increase in total plasma antioxidant capacity, and the mechanism by which this is achieved, must also be considered — however, it should not be assumed that the effect is necessarily beneficial.

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