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Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr. 2014;54(11):1458-72. doi: 10.1080/10408398.2011.641041.

Cocoa phytochemicals: recent advances in molecular mechanisms on health.

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1
a WCU Biomodulation Major, Department of Agricultural Biotechnology , Seoul National University , Seoul , 151-742 , Republic of Korea.

Abstract

Recent reports on cocoa are appealing in that a food commonly consumed for pure pleasure might also bring tangible benefits for human health. Cocoa consumption is correlated with reduced health risks of cardiovascular diseases, hypertension, atherosclerosis, and cancer, and the health-promoting effects of cocoa are mediated by cocoa-driven phytochemicals. Cocoa is rich in procyanidins, theobromine, (-)-epicatechin, catechins, and caffeine. Among the phytochemicals present in consumed cocoa, theobromine is most available in human plasma, followed by caffeine, (-)-epicatechin, catechin, and procyanidins. It has been reported that cocoa phytochemicals specifically modulate or interact with specific molecular targets linked to the pathogenesis of chronic human diseases, including cardiovascular diseases, cancer, neurodegenerative diseases, obesity, diabetes, and skin aging. This review summarizes comprehensive recent findings on the beneficial actions of cocoa-driven phytochemicals in molecular mechanisms of human health.

PMID:
24580540
DOI:
10.1080/10408398.2011.641041
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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