Now that the sweltering Houston summer has arrived, people are more likely to crave a cold glass of ice tea than a mug of hot chocolate. But, a new study could have some local residents thinking differently – particularly for men and women who are concerned about their weight.

As we've touched upon in the past, obesity poses many substantial risks for long-term health and aging longevity by increasing the likelihood of heart disease and diabetes. This is in part because consuming a fat-laden diet can trigger internal inflammation, which is associated with these medical conditions.

Recently, though, scientists from Pennsylvania State University have discovered that a beverage typically savored during the holiday season can potentially offset this reaction. According to a university press release, drinking hot cocoa may reduce the inflammation that occurs within the body when people consume too much fatty food.

The scientists used an animal model and found that over a 10-week period, mice that were given daily cocoa supplements and fed a high-fat diet exhibited less inflammation than those that did not consume the supplements.

"Most obesity researchers tend to steer clear of chocolate because it is high in fat, high in sugar and is usually considered an indulgence [but] cocoa powder is low in fat and low in sugar," explained associate professor Joshua Lambert.

Lambert said that he was "surprised' by the extent of the health benefits his research team observed in the mice that were given cocoa, and expressed the hope that further research will be conducted to better understand this relationship.

For more information about how dietary choices affect your long-term health, contact Longevity Centres of America today. We offer medical weight loss in Houston, as well as hormone pellet implants, IV chelation therapy and other forms of anti-aging medicine.