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Ghana Med J. 2009 Dec;43(4):164-8.

Effects of the intake of natural cocoa powder on some biochemical and haematological indices in the rat.

Author information

  • 1Department Of Biochemistry, University of Cape Coast, Cape Coast, Ghana.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Natural cocoa and cocoa products are increasingly attracting the attention of many investigators and the general public because of their potential nutritional and medicinal properties and other claims.

OBJECTIVE:

This study sought to evaluate the effect the consumption of natural cocoa powder has on some biochemical and hematological indices in the rat, as a way of establishing the biochemical basis for some of the claims made for the consumption of cocoa and its products.

METHODS:

Male Wistar albino rats were fed natural cocoa powder in an aqueous suspension for 48 days, Biochemical and haematological indices were then determined from blood samples.

RESULTS:

The treatment had no significant effect on ALT, AST, ALP, uric acid, total protein, haemoglobin and haematocrit levels. However, there were significant reductions in the total cholesterol level (2.52 ± 0.07 mmol/L) versus (1.88 ± 0.23 mmol/L), LDL - cholesterol level (1.09 ± 0.03 m mol/L) versus (0.74 ± 0.06 m mol/L), and in triglyceride level (1.28 ± 0.15 m mol/L) versus (1.08 ± 0.04 m mol/L) after treatment (p <0.05). The results further indicated significant increases in white blood cell (7.53 ± 0.19 × 10(3)/mm(3)) versus (10.40 ± 1.66 × 10(3)/mm(3)) and platelet counts (379± 112.0× 10(3)/mm(3)) versus (583.8±11.4× 10(3)/mm(3)).

CONCLUSION:

The administration of natural cocoa powder to rats caused significant reductions in total serum cholesterol levels, LDL-cholesterol levels and triglycerides with a significant increase in white blood cell counts.

KEYWORDS:

Cocoa powder; alanine aminotransferase; alkaline phosphatase; aspartate aminotransferase; lipid profile

PMID:
21326996
[PubMed]
PMCID:
PMC2956371
Free PMC Article
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