Q: Does carob have any of the heart benefits that chocolate does?
Oz Says: Chocolate is the clear winner of that race, although carob, ground from the pods of the carob tree, has a couple of things going for it that chocolate doesn't. For one, it's free of caffeine, whereas an ounce of dark chocolate has 23 mg. Carob chips also tend to be made without milk fat, unlike many chocolate ones. But if you're not very sensitive to caffeine or lactose and you're not vegan, chocolate is the better bet by far, says Kristin Kirkpatrick, RD, a wellness manager at the Cleveland Clinic. "It contains flavonoids, plant compounds that may improve artery function and lower inflammation," she says.
This story originally appeared in the December 2015 issue of Dr. Oz The Good Life.