The Nutritional component of Cacao
Cacao is rich in the nutrients:
The Health benefits of Cacao
- Total carbohydrates
- Vitamins A and C
- The minerals magnesium, zinc, copper, sodium, iron and calcium
- Dietary fibre
- Saturated fats
Helps with depression
Cacao contains phenylethylamine, which regulates your moods, especially pleasure and the warm feelings a person gets when they are in love. It is also a stimulant which keeps you mentally alert.
The high levels of magnesium in cacao helps you to feel more relaxed during stressful times.
The flavonoids in cacao are linked to many benefits to our heart, such as:
Reduce the risk of cancer
- Reducing bad cholesterol
- Lowering blood pressure
- The antioxidants on cacao and theobromine, which is a stimulant, improve the flow of blood in the arteries and reduce the build-up of plaque, which is a heart disease risk factor.
The antioxidants present in cacao arrest the free radical in the body thought to contribute to the growth of cancer cells.
They also repair the damage caused by the free radicals and toxins.
Helps with weight loss
Cacao in its raw form is sugar free and contains few calories. It is also an appetite suppressant helping you to control your hunger in between meals.
The fibre in cacao also sits in your stomach for longer, making you feel full for long periods.
Many beauty products incorporate cacao into their manufacture for the antioxidants present which help the skin glow. Cacao:
Helps with digestion
- Reduces stretch marks
- Helps with dry and oily types of skin by keeping it well hydrated
- Helps with skin problems such as eczema and skin irritations.
The fibre in cacao helps to stimulate digestive enzyme production, making your gut function properly and protect you from digestive disorders.
Cacao contains similar polyphenol antioxidants as though found in green tea. These protect your body cells from destruction from oxidation thus keeping you looking younger.
The sulphur content in cacao also helps with healthy skin and hair.
Give you energy
The magnesium in cacao helps to combat fatigue by optimising the use of oxygen as well as balance brain chemistry and regulates blood pressure, all of which are causes of feelings of fatigue and weakness.
Cacao is also a rich source of iron, used by the body for energy metabolism and the distribution of oxygen throughout the body cells.
Vitamin B2 in cacao is used by the body for energy production and well as for cell respiration.
Vitamin B1 also used for the production of energy in the cells.
Fight tooth decay
Cacao helps to protect your teeth from decay, perhaps even more than fluoride! The extract present in cacao helps to harden the tooth enamel.
Cacao is an aphrodisiac which contains phenethylamine, a compound that triggers the release of endorphins and other neuro-chemicals.
The practice of giving dark chocolate on Valentine’s Day comes from this research that shows the presence of those compounds in cacao that induce feelings of pleasure and raise the libido.
Hormonal mood swings
Women who suffer from PMS , experience terrible mood swings. Cacao boosts the presence of serotonin, a brain chemical that makes you feel good.
When going through PMS, the levels of this brain chemical drop, which is what causes the mood swings.
Cacao helps to regulate insulin levels in diabetes sufferers and also prevents insulin resistance.
Cardiovascular diseases affect many diabetic patients. Cacao aids with blood vessels functioning, reducing the risk of heart disease caused by diabetes.
Studies have shown that cacao thins blood and prevent blood clots which can be life threatening.