As long as cocoa beans grow on trees, cocoa is a fruit. – Unknown
Cocoa is the plant from which chocolate is made. Cocoa powder is produced by squeezing the fat (cocoa butter) from bitter chocolate and powdering the remaining material. Without adding sugar, milk solids and vanilla, chocolate which is produced by pressing roasted cocoa kernels (seeds) between hot rollers turn out bitter.
Until recently, cocoa has been regarded as a food treat but these days, it is also used by some people as medicine.
There are some scientific researched that support the use of cocoa to control, and in prolonged cases, cure some ailments.
How does it work?
Cocoa contains a variety of chemicals, including antioxidants called flavonoids. Research indicates that these compounds might also reduce the activity of chemicals in the body that promote inflammation or blockage of blood vessels.
Let’s take a look at …. Benefits of taking cocoa.
- Heart disease: Some research show that eating cocoa lowers the chance of heart disease by lowering blood pressure and improving the function of blood vessels.
- High blood pressure: Most research show that eating dark chocolate or cocoa products for 2-18 weeks can lower the top number in a blood pressure reading.
Although there is insufficient evidence for some others, here are other benefits.
- Ageing skin: Some research suggests that taking cocoa extract alone or in combination with other ingredients might improve skin wrinkles, elasticity. Although some users agree it reduces the chances of increased stretch marks during pregnancy, this claim has not been scientifically proven.
- Chronic fatigue syndrome: Early research suggests that consuming cocoa daily can reduce fatigue, anxiety, and lift the mood.
- Constipation: Research suggests that taking cocoa daily might help soften stool in children suffering from constipation.
- Diabetes: Medical research suggests that cocoa might reduce insulin resistance and improve sensitivity.
- Insect repellant: Research indicates that applying cocoa oil to the skin reduces black fly insect bites.
- Weight loss: Early research suggests that following a reduced-calorie diet, eating two squares of dark chocolate and drinking a sugar-free cocoa beverage daily for 18 weeks can help with weight loss.
Why settle for highly sugary beverage and snack when there are indications that cocoa provides some benefits. Note that if you have any form of ailment and you need a change of diet, speak to your medical practitioner first before taking any step.