'Dark chocolate might pack a double positive punch for our health—thanks to the microbes that live in our gut. New research suggests that beneficial bacteria that reside toward the end of our digestive tract ferment both the antioxidants and the fiber in cocoa.
In their deep-gut alchemy these microbes create anti-inflammatory compounds that have been linked to the cardiovascular and other benefits from dark chocolate consumption.
The findings were presented March 18 at the American Chemical Society meeting in Dallas. Other new research helps explain how some of cocoa's widespread health benefits—from improving vascular function to increasing insulin sensitivity—may be linked—and good for even the young and the healthy.'