There’s always some sort of research being conducted on chocolate and every time the findings are positive. This goes to show that chocolate is indeed good for us, but maybe you’ve noticed, the findings are always in favor of dark chocolate, a chocolate with very little sugar content. If you travel a little backwards and see the origin of chocolate, the cacao beans, they are actually much more than a source for chocolate. These are superfoods in themselves and have some amazing health benefits.
Cacao has a fascinating history with plenty of legends surrounding it, but what can be deduced is that until sugar was added, the drink made from cacao was considered highly potent. Today, there’s plenty of research available to suggest that cacao is indeed really good for us. Here are the ways in which cacao can help us as far as health is concerned. Now don’t run out and gorge on chocolate, cacao is a stimulant so moderation is key! Here are some amazing benefits of using cacao:
• Increases blood flow to the brain and enhances brain function
• Has a high concentration of anti oxidants such as polyphenols, catechins and epicatechins. Anti oxidants as we all know are the holy grail of youth and a disease free life.
• The magnesium in cacao is good for the heart, helps prevent constipation and even eases menstrual cramps.
• Cacao also has iron, which makes it a great weapon to fight against anemia.
• Cacao contains chromium, a trace mineral which works wonders to maintain the balance of blood sugar.
• Manganese, another trace mineral that can be found in cacao is great when it comes to the building up of hemoglobin.
• Zinc, another mineral that cacao contains is known for its essential role in enhancing our immune system.
• Raw cacao contains vitamin C as well, which has its own gamut of uses.
• Raw cacao contains essential omega 6 fatty acids. An important thing to note is that cooked and processed chocolate contains rancid omega 6 fatty acids or trans fats which are not healthy for you.
• Cacao beans contain certain compounds that can trigger weight loss, make you feel good and improve your mood considerably.
• The fiber in cacao beans works wonderful to cleanse the digestive system.
Cacao can be found as cacao beans with or without the skin, cacao nibs, cacao butter, powerer paste and ideally it should all be raw and organic. A great idea would be to buy raw organic cacao products and include them in your usual drinks such as tea or coffee or even coconut water. You can also use cacao nibs in desserts but ideally if you love dark chocolate, you should be able to adjust to the bitter taste of raw cacao which can do so many wonders for your body. Science yet has to understand the many layers and benefits of chocolate, but these are indeed pretty much there for everyone to see.