Cocoa is a super food, for some more potent
than any invented medicine
PC. Luis Quiroz Ravines
Cocoa “Food of the Gods.” is the name Greek for the tree
Cocoa is a food that has been known for some 4,000 years ago in America, particularly in Mexico, Mayan and Aztec tribes used it as money and consumed almost 2000 years before Christ. The tribe of the Kuna in Central America still consumed in high amounts, an average of 40 cups of chocolate a week.
The amazing thing about the Kuna is their enviable health and the most aggressive diseases of the Western world, such as cancer, diabetes, heart failure, stroke and others affect only Cribs levels below 10%.
Some researchers began to pay attention to the diet of the Kuna and found that the bitter cocoa was the source of good
The kuna is an indigenous people who live in the islands of San Blas belonging to Panama and in their language, Kuna means "people" are known to enjoy enviable health levels and to be great consumers of natural cocoa.
It is a small community of about 300,000 people of which about 45,000 live on 49 main islands and are led by a chief named "Sahila"
The main activities of the Kuna are fishing, fruit picking, especially coconuts and handicrafts. Their language is the Kuna but they also speak Spanish and some English because of their relationship with tourists
Cocoa, chocolate, and coffee
Today coffee and chocolate are two of the most widely consumed beverages in the world. The first bar of chocolate based on cocoa and sugar was introduced by the British company J.S.Fry & Sons in 1847.
In the dark chocolate, there are more than 400 polyphenols beneficial to health.
Italian researchers studied the effects of cocoa into 4 groups of participants from 60 to 85 years old. A group was given 48 mg of cocoa (low dose) to a second 520 mg group. Daily (half dose) and a third group 993 mg. per Day (high dose). The fourth group zero cocoa.
After 8 weeks, the researchers found that participants who consumed medium and high doses of chocolate, significantly improved their levels of attention and memory.
A similar study by the same researchers in 2012 showed that daily consumption of dark cocoa improved in adults, a condition called mild cognitive impairment.
Benefits of cocoa, this food is not only good for the brain, it is also beneficial for the heart, high blood pressure, and even diabetes. But these benefits are obtained with a 70% or more purity.
The main components of cocoa are healthy theobromine, epicatechin, and resveratrol which have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.
Resveratrol, for example, is an antioxidant protective effects neurons and has the ability to cross the blood-brain barrier to protect from inflammation to the brain cells.
Professor Norman Hollenberg of the Harvard University has spent much time studying the Kuna tribe of Panama and discovered that epicatechin that Kuna consumed in high doses, was one of those responsible for their enviable health.
A later study found that cocoa has more than 400 chemical elements and more antioxidant capacity than red wine or green tea, both high in polyphenols. Cocoa has also shown healthy outcomes for their chemopreventive, anti-cancer and anti-mutagenic effects.
Other studies have shown that regular intake of dark chocolate lowers high blood pressure, increases the elasticity of the sanguíneoas vessels and could reduce up to 29% risk of stroke and up to 37% risk of coronary heart disease.
Unfortunately, the industrial chocolate is full of sugar, milk and other components that significantly reduce its health effects. It is advisable to purchase high purity chocolate with no additives or sugar. The more bitter, the better, because polyphenols are communicating bitter chocolate flavor.
Health Benefits of Raw Cacao vs Cocoa Powder
Cocoa – The super antioxidant fruit
The antioxidant value of food is measured with a score called ORAC ("Oxygen Radical Absorption Capacity") that measures how much free radicals can be eliminated or neutralized in a certain variety of foods. The higher the ORAC score the greater a number of antioxidants in a food
A cocoa powder according to a research by scientists at Cornell University has almost twice as many antioxidants as wine and up to 3 times more antioxidants than green tea.
These findings appear to demonstrate a link between cardiovascular health and cocoa, that is, consuming cocoa on a regular basis reduces the risk of heart attacks, blood clots, and strokes.
Some experts, such as Dr. Al Sears claim that raw cocoa has the highest antioxidant value of all foods known in the world.
According to the antioxidant scoring measure, ORAC, cocoa has in 100 grams 28,000 ORAC units against 18,500 for Acai berries and 1,260 for raw spinach.
Even a good dark chocolate with a minimum of 70% cocoa has an impressive 13,120 units and quality milk chocolates have an ORAC of 6,740 units.
The high sulfur content of cocoa helps build healthy skin, strong hair and healthy nails but at the same time is useful for proper liver and pancreas function
Cocoa is filled with minerals such as calcium, sulfur, magnesium, copper, zinc, manganese, potassium and some B vitamins.
Crude cocoa beans have high contents of bioflavonoids called flavones that are potent antioxidants and help to lower high blood pressure and maintain healthy blood flow. Epicatechins help dissolves fatty substances in the bloodstream by preventing clogged arteries.
That is to say it is a natural anticoagulant that could avoid the formation of blood clots, vascular cerebrovascular accidents, and heart attacks but without the negative side effects of pharmaceutical anticoagulants like the use of Aspirina.
Healthy cocoa contains an incredible 10% of health-effective antioxidants that can not be supplied in these ranges by any known food, nor acai, nor blueberries or vegetables. And the antioxidants in cocoa are easily absorbed by the body and are more stable and durable than any other antioxidant food.
Cocoa Phenylethylamine promotes a state of mental alertness and increases the capacity of concentration. On the other hand, the tryptophan of the seed causes the serotonin to promote positive feelings and reduce the depression. This healthy food for the heart is also healthy for the brain.
Why is cocoa a super antioxidant?
The healthy benefits of pure cocoa and dark chocolate have long been suspected, scientists knew that it was rich in antioxidants but did not know that its antioxidant value was far superior to the antioxidant stars: red wine and green tea.
Cornell University scientists examined a glass of red wine and found 340 milligrams of GAE and 163 milligrams of ECE epicatechin flavonoids and in one cup of green tea found 47 milligrams of ECE and 165 milligrams of ECE milligrams of GAE.
By comparing, they found that in 1.5 ounces of dark chocolate there were as many antioxidants as in 5 ounces of red wine
One of the most important causes of many degenerative diseases such as premature aging, cancer, heart attacks and others, is the damage to DNA and cellular mitochondria and these cells damaged by not being able to produce healthy cells produce malignant or damaged cells.
Antioxidants help eliminate or neutralize the free radicals that cause these damages in DNA and mitochondria.
And cocoa has very stable antioxidants and is readily available to the human body, in fact, cocoa is the only food that does not lose for long periods its absorption power of oxygen radicals which makes it a highly healthy food and a source of the most important antioxidants that can be found in nature.
Studies indicate that consumption of cocoa and dark chocolate improves a person's mental capacity, delays the onset of dementia, and improves insulin sensitivity, that is, it has a protective effect against diabetes.
Cocoa health benefits for weight loss
Usually, you are told that chocolate is fattening and is likely if you abuse chocolate, chocolate sugar will increase calories.
But you will be surprised to know that chocolate suppresses your appetite and can help you lose weight.
Cocoa fats are healthy fats. Cocoa oleic acid is heart healthy because it is monounsaturated fat and can raise HDL cholesterol ie good cholesterol
Top Healthy Cocoa Components
Raw cocoa is one of the most complex foods on earth and contains over 700 identifiable chemical compounds making it one of the healthiest foods on the planet.
This is a partial list of substances found in pure organic cocoa
**Dopamine (a neurotransmitter)
**Arginine (aphrodisiac of nature)
**Tryptophan (antidepressant amino acid)
**Serotonin (anti-stress neurotransmitter)
**Magnesium (for healthy cardiac function)
**Phenylethylamine (PEA) (controls ability to focus attention and stay alert)
**Anandamide (a neurotransmitter known as "the happiness chemist")
Magnesium a major mineral for heart
Dr. Bernard Jensen says that magnesium and potassium are two essential minerals for the heart muscle; magnesium accumulates 18 times more than any other mineral in the heart muscle than in the bloodstream and helps regulate blood pressure and the number of beats in the heart.
This important mineral also decreases blood clotting which helps to lower blood pressure and cocoa provides high doses of magnesium.
Benefits of Cocoa to Fight Depression
The neurotransmitters dopamine, serotonin and phenylethylamine are associated with feelings of well-being and relieve depression and cocoa is a potent supplier of these substances.
Nitric Oxide and Blood Pressure
Dark chocolate helps process nitric oxide which is a critical compound in controlling blood pressure and in blood flow. Another study found that cocoa flavones prevent fats from oxidizing in the bloodstream and that blood platelets do not stick easily to cause blood clots.
Theobromine in Cocoa and Chocolate
Theobromine is present in natural cocoa between 1 and 2% and the main property of this substance is to relax smooth muscles, dilate the blood vessels and stimulate the central nervous system.
Another property of theobromine is its mild diuretic ability and has been used in cases where the heart accumulates excessive body fluid and has also been used to alleviate high blood pressure by being a cardiac stimulant.
Caffeine in Cocoa and Chocolate
The following amounts of caffeine are estimated in cocoa and chocolate
Cocoa contains about 5% caffeine in each cup ie 4 to 5 milligrams of caffeine.
NASA astronauts slow down extreme aging
by consuming an essential mineral
In space, the cardiovascular system ages 10 times faster than on earth because there are more oxidative stress, more inflammation and more resistance to insulin.
Biological clocks that regulate aging shorten faster in a space booth, ie telomeres shorten at a faster rate and accelerate the aging process and telomerase is a substance dormant in the body that if activated can slow the aging of the telomeres.
To overcome this accelerated spatial aging, specialists use a miraculous mineral for this purpose: magnesium
Before a flight, NASA scientists measure the levels of telomeres and telomerase to supply magnesium because the synthesis of the telomeres is sensitive to the amount of magnesium available to the astronaut.
The insufficiency of magnesium in astronauts increases oxidative stress and DNA damage so it is necessary to increase their levels in the body of astronauts
In today's world magnesium deficiency is almost an epidemic so eating foods rich in magnesium is tied to healthier telomeres.
And cocoa is a food with high magnesium content, in only 3 ounces there is about 176 mg of magnesium.
Apples and chocolate a great combination
There are foods that have synergistic effects when consumed together. This is the case of apples and chocolate.
Apples reduce risks associated with heart attacks due to their antioxidant flavonoids including quercetin, anti-inflammatory and dark chocolate, rich in antioxidants catechins, which supports heart health; when both are associated they have been shown to reduce blood clots and consequently reduce the risk of heart attacks.
Cocoa has an extraordinary ability to prevent deadly diseases and if cocoa were consumed judiciously, it would probably save many lives because Cocoa contains over 700 known compounds.
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