5 Amazing Health Benefits of Cacao Superfood
Have you ever come across or used cacao?
No, I am not talking about cocoa here. Cacao is slightly different from cocoa and is mainly used in powder form.
In this article, we will discuss the various health and nutrition benefits of cacao.
But, let’s start with the basics.
What is Cacao? How is it Different from Cocoa?
Cacao beans are the main ingredient in chocolate. They are extracted from a pod-like fruit that grows on the Theobroma cacao tree. Each fruit contains about 20-60 beans, which are compressed to separate the contents.
Experts believe that the main parts, including the pods, beans and inside contents of beans are what make “cacao”, while the powder content left as a residue after extracting most of the fat out of the beans is called “cocoa”.
Some others use the term “cacao” to denote the raw or unprocessed version of these beans.
In short, it can be said that cacao is the purest and most natural variety of the beans.
However, nothing is consistent when it comes to the use of the terms “cocoa” vs “cacao” by chocolate manufacturers. More than often the two terms are used interchangeably, so it isn’t easy to differentiate one from another
Health Benefits of Cacao
Raw Organic Cacao powder has amazing health benefits and nutritional value. They are an excellent source of antioxidants, iron, magnesium, calcium and several other crucial minerals and vitamins.
Without further ado, let’s get to know the major health benefits cacao:
1. High Antioxidant Content
Organic cacao is rich in antioxidants that can significantly improve our immune system and protect from common diseases.
Besides that, the antioxidants present in raw cacao can help control free radicals, thus preventing them to do more damage in the body. (1)
Some studies also suggest that antioxidants in cacao are beneficial in heart disease, cancer, diabetes, among others.
It is said that cacao has about 40 times more antioxidants than blueberries.
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2. Good Source of Plant-Based Iron
Cacao is considered the best source of iron for those on a plant-based or vegan diet. Each 100g of cacao supplement contains about 7.3mg of pure, high-quality iron.
Since the iron present in cacao is non-heme, it is recommended to take in combination with foods containing Vitamin C.
3. Rich in Magnesium
Taking about minerals, cacao is also a brilliant source of the highest quality plant-based magnesium.
Magnesium is a kind of versatile mineral which takes care of our heart, brain as well as bones. Studies suggest that Magnesium in cacao can also help with diabetes and anxiety-related problems.
Would you believe me if I say that cacao superfood can give you more calcium than what you get from cow’s milk?
It’s true. Each 100g of cacao supplement contains about 160mg of Calcium as compared to 125mg in 100ml of milk.
5. Boost the Mood
Depression is a very common problem in our time. While most of us seek out professional consultation to curb the problem, eating raw cacao can also help.
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We all have heard or seen the use of chocolate as antidepressants. There are also some scientific studies that support it.
Cacao has four neurotransmitters, namely serotonin, tyrosine, tryptophan and phenylethylamine, which are known as bliss chemicals because of their amazing capability to make you feel happy and reduce depression signs.
If you’re considering to include cacao superfood supplement to your meals, make sure to use only an organic product like Raw Nutritional's Cacao Powder. Non-organic cacao or cocoa products may contain toxic pesticides and other harmful chemicals as well as GMO products, so it’s better to avoid them.
Infographic of Cacao Benefits:
(1) SFGATE (e.d.). Antioxidant Benefits of Raw Cacao from https://healthyeating.sfgate.com/antioxidant-benefits-raw-cacao-3990.html
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