Eating chocolate during pregnancy can help prevent pre-eclampsia in babies

Eating chocolate during pregnancy could help prevent pre-eclampsia, research shows.

It suggests women who eat chocolate at least five times a week are 40 per cent less likely to develop the condition than those who consume it less than once a week.

Although the causes of pre-eclampsia - which kills 1,000 babies a year in the UK - are unknown, it leads to blood vessels in the placenta failing to develop. This can drive up a woman's blood pressure and reduce the transfer of oxygen and nutrients to the foetus. As a result, babies are often born prematurely and many die.

The research, published in the journal Epidemiology, also suggests that the chemical theobromine - which occurs naturally in chocolate, particularly dark varieties - could be responsible for the protection.

Source - Daily Mail

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