The Weekly Skinny: All the healthy news you need (4-2-10)

Are some restaurant portions actually getting smaller? It could be a healthy side effect of the down economy. FatFighterTV has a look at this story and other diet and fitness headlines making news this week.

Popular restaurants serving up smaller bites

Could smaller servings at restaurants become the next popular purchase during this recession? A report in USA Today says some casual-dining chains are rolling out tapas-like small plates that are usually cheaper than their appetizers by one to three dollars. Restaurants like Houlihan's, Cheesecake Factory, and California Pizza Kitchen are doing it to try to boost business in this tough economy. Could an unintended side effect be that we will eat less?

A small dose of chocolate could protect your heart

Just in time for the Easter bunny's delivery… a new study finds chocolate can control blood pressure, and in turn, lower your risk of having a heart attack or stroke. Researchers say the cocoa-rich dark chocolate has the greatest benefit and stress this is not an excuse to stuff yourself with chocolate… so don't do that, okay?

Junk foods may be as addictive as cocaine
Is it possible to be hooked on junk food? A few months ago, this report suggested junk food could be as addictive as drugs. Now another one finds the same. The research in rats says high-fat, high-calorie foods affect the brain in a similar way as cocaine and heroin do. The study found when rats ate a lot of these foods, they had compulsive eating habits that resemble drug addiction

Also see:
Walking could stop chocolate cravings
The best chocolates
Is the bad economy making us fat?

[photo credit: Getty Images]