5 health benefits of raw cacao - read on if you are a chocolate lover!
5 HEALTH BENEFITS OF RAW CACAO
1 - ANTIOXIDANTS
Raw cacao - sometimes called “The Food of the Gods” - is an antioxidant powerhouse. 100g Raw cacao has an * ORAC value of over 55,000. Antioxidants are substances that can prevent or slow some types of cell damage caused by free radicals.
Raw cacao powder is different from Cocoa powder which is processed at much higher temperatures than raw cacao, degrading the nutrition you will find in raw cacao. It will often have added ingredients including refined sugar and will have a different taste.
2 - FIBRE
Raw cacao is an excellent source of fibre. The UK government daily dietary fibre target is 30g a day but according to a recent BBC report, less than 10% of people achieve this target. A good quality raw cacao powder can be around 25% fibre.
3 - ENERGY
Raw cacao powder is high in iron which EFSA (the European Food Safety Authority) confirms “contributes to the reduction of tiredness and fatigue.”
4 - BOOST MOOD
A study published in the Journal of Psychopharmacology 2013 showed that there is a mood boosting effect attained by eating raw cacao at certain levels for 30 days. Chocolate with a high percentage of cacao could also benefit your mood. How so? Raw cacao is high in polyphenols which are shown to help with anxiety reduction and enhance calmness. Raw cacao is high in magnesium which Psychology Today magazine has dubbed the “The Original Chill Pill”.
5 - REDUCE BLOOD PRESSURE
A study from the University Hospital Dusseldorf concluded that cacao flavanols lower blood pressure and increase blood vessel function in healthy people. *note if you are suffering from an existing blood pressure issue always take guidance from your healthcare provider.
*ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity)
Gras, D et al Am J Clin Nutr 2005
Ruijters EJ et al Pharmacol 2014
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