Yukari Kato*, Midori Natsume, Kyoko Ito, Aiko Nakano, Kosuke Ozawa, Masayuki Sato, Taketo Yamaji, Hiroyoshi Inoue
Background: It has been reported that chocolates and almonds have a wide variety of health benefits. Chocolatecovered almonds (almond chocolates) are popular chocolate confectioneries in Japan. However, their health benefits have not yet been explored to date. To clarify their health benefits, we investigated the beneficial effects of the intake of almond chocolates on bowel movement and skin conditions. Methods: This single-blinded (investigator-blinded) parallel-group comparison study was conducted on women with a tendency toward constipation and subjective symptoms of dry skin. The study included 36 participants who consumed eight pieces (approximately 30 g) of almond chocolates daily in the treatment (intake) group and 35 participants in the control (no intake) group. Bowel movement and skin conditions of these individuals were evaluated based on the records in their diaries and the stratum corneum water content measured before intervention (baseline values) and 4 and 8 weeks after intervention, respectively. In addition, questionnaire surveys about subjective symptoms were administered and an evaluation was conducted based on the obtained responses. Results: The results showed that the intake of almond chocolates significantly improved the respondents’ (participants’) bowel movements (i.e., stool frequency and amount), and the surveys showed improvement in their gastrointestinal and skin conditions. In addition, stratified analysis of individuals with severely dry skin symptoms revealed that intake of almond chocolates significantly improved the stratum corneum water content 8 weeks after the intervention compared with baseline levels (before intervention).
Published Date: 2021-02-18; Received Date: 2021-01-28