Everyone’s know that chocolate is high in fat and should be eaten in moderation likely that’s not the whole story. The good news is that dark chocolate could reduce blood pressure. The Cochrane Collaboration’s report investigated the effects of chemicals called flavanols.
Flavanols are found in cocoa products, such as cocoa powder, dark chocolate and, to a lesser extent, milk chocolate. They are thought to widen blood vessels, causing a drop in blood pressure. The average reduction was relatively modest – a drop of 2-3mmHg. This small drop may be useful if other methods, such as regular exercise, are also used to reduce blood pressure. It looks like chocolate in moderation can be part of a healthy balanced diet. It’s important to remember that chocolate is high in fat and calories. It’s not easy to work out what sort of quantities of flavanols would be needed to observe a beneficial effect of them. You can read more about dark chocolate benefits here and here
“Beans, apricots, blackberries and apples also contain flavanols and, while containing lower amounts than in cocoa, they won’t come with the unhealthy extras found in chocolate.”
Dark chocolate, milk chocolate or maybe raw chocolate….
Raw chocolate can be the answer. Chocolate in its natural state – not cooked or over-processed. It doesn’t contain vegetable fat, milk or sugar and it isn’t heated above 42C, the point at which nutrients start to die. Pure cacao is a powerful, healing, alchemical ingredient with more than 300 chemically identifiable compounds. It is said to be significantly richer in antioxidant flavanols than green tea, red wine or acai, and contains protein, fats, calcium, iron, carotene, thiamine and riboflavine.
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If you want to make your own raw chocolate, you can find lots of recipes here