As if we needed a reason to dive into a pint of gelato, a cardiologist in Italy has invented an antioxidant-rich gelato that has proven health benefits.
Valerio Sanguigni, a professor at The University of Rome Tor Vergata, has patented a recipe for gelato containing antioxidants, substances that can improve heart function, prevent diseases, and have even been linked to a longer lifespan, according to The Local.
The study, published in the scientific journal Nutrition, found that many foods containing antioxidants actually lose those properties before they’re eaten and are best preserved in dried fruits, cocoa beans, and green tea in low, controlled temperatures. Using this research, Sanguigni created three gelato flavors — chocolate, hazelnut, and green tea — using a secret recipe.
To test the gelato’s efficacy, Sanguigni conducted a study that required participants to take blood tests before and after sampling either the antioxidant-rich gelato or regular gelato, and then exercising on a stationary bike. Results showed that those who ate Sanguigni’s gelato had improved vascular function and overall improved physical performance.