1. ITV Report

Chocolate could protect us against diabetes

Chocolates contain flavonoids. Photo: PA

Research by the University of East Anglia in Norwich has found that ingredients in chocolate, tea and berries could help protect us against diabetes.

The foods all contain flavonoids which could offer protection against type 2 diabetes.

A study of almost 2,000 people also found that these food groups lower inflammation which, when chronic, is associated with diabetes, obesity, cardiovascular disease, and cancer.

The research was carried out at the UEA and Kings College London Credit: ITV

The research was led by Prof Aedin Cassidy from UEA's Norwich Medical School

"This is one of the first large-scale human studies to look at how these powerful bioactive compounds might reduce the risk of diabetes.

Laboratory studies have shown these types of foods might modulate blood glucose regulation - affecting the risk of type 2 diabetes.

But until now little has been know about how habitual intakes might affect insulin resistance, blood glucose regulation and inflammation in humans.

We found that those who consumed plenty of anthocyanins and flavones had lower insulin resistance.

High insulin resistance is associated with Type 2 diabetes, so what we are seeing is that people who eat foods rich in these two compounds - such as berries, herbs, red grapes, wine- are less likely to develop the disease

– Prof Aedin Cassidy, UEA