Cocoa and dark chocolates can boost Vitamin D intake, strengthen bones

Foods rich in cocoa, such as cocoa butter, cocoa beans, cocoa powder, and dark chocolates may improve the vitamin D intake.

Vitamin D comes in two types - vitamin D2 and D3. While, vitamin D3 is produced in the human skin through exposure to the sun, the rest is ideally consumed through food such as fatty fish, chicken or eggs.

The findings, published in the Journal Food Chemistry, revealed that products containing cocoa are indeed a source of vitamin D2. However, the amount varied greatly from food to food. This is not surprising as the cocoa content in white chocolate is significantly lower. It confirms our assumption that cocoa is the source of vitamin D2, sources from University Halle-Wittenberg in Germany stated.

The researchers said that brittle bones and an increased risk of respiratory diseases could be the result of vitamin D deficiency and cocoa butter and dark chocolate have the highest amount of vitamin D2.

Cocoa beans were dried after fermentation, placed on mats and exposed to the sun for one to two weeks. While dark chocolate has a relatively high vitamin D2 content, very little amount of vitamin D was found in white chocolate. However, the researchers do not recommend consuming large quantities of chocolates.