Cacao: Why raw cacao is so healthyThe fact that conventional cacao is healthy is already well known. However, raw cacao is even better. It has what it takes to become a superfood. Why, we explain here.
Raw cacao has more healthy content
You probably know this from fruits and vegetables: most vitamins in fresh foods are reduced as soon as they are heated. The same happens with cacao. In conventional cacao production, the beans are roasted. This not only changes the taste, it diminishes some valuable ingredients.
– Manufacturers of raw cocoa already take care when drying and fermenting the cocoa beans that the temperatures do not rise above 40 degrees Celsius. In addition the cocoa is not roasted naturally. – Raw cocoa produced in this way or products made from it can be recognized by the label "raw" or "raw". – Raw cacao contains more so-called bioflavonoids and vitamins than conventional cacao because they are very sensitive to heat.
What makes raw cacao special
An important ingredient that adds value to raw cacao is apparently the flavonoid Epicatechin. Other important ingredients that are better preserved in unprocessed raw cocoa include a number of B vitamins: B1, B5, B6 and folic acid among them.
– Epicatechin reduces bad LDL cholesterol, protects against atherosclerosis and prevents the formation of oxygen radicals. These radicals cause faster aging. Are sometimes even involved in the development of cancer. – The blood sugar level can also be positively influenced by the flavonoid epicatechin. A delicious measure to prevent diabetes would therefore be the enjoyment of raw cacao. – Some athletes hope epicatechin will have an added effect: research suggests it can apparently help build muscle mass. However, the studies on this are still quite thin. – Also Folic acid is a vitamin that makes cocoa interesting. The vitamin supports growth processes. A good blood. Vitamin B5, pantothenic acid, is another heat-sensitive vitamin. It helps with many metabolic processes. A B5-plus is recommended for skin problems such as acne or hair loss.
Cocoa makes you awake
Cacao – whether raw or roasted as is usually the case – generally has a lot to offer that is good for your body. The most important ones are these:
Theobromine is a main active ingredient of cacao, which has ensured the widespread use of chocolate and cacao-containing drinks: it makes you awake, has a mood-lifting effect and at the same time relaxes the circulatory system. – With chocolate and co. you usually also get a good portion of MagnesiumThe higher the cacao content of the product, the more magnesium it contains. In raw cocoa, this is after all 100 to 300 milligrams per 100 grams. – In addition, in cocoa is relatively much Ironcontain (about 7 mg/100 g). On the other hand, the brown bean also contains a certain amount of oxalic acid. This acid partly prevents iron absorption. In combination with vitamin C, absorption is thus improved.
How to use raw cacao
Cocoa can be found in any supermarket or discount store. You usually have to look for raw cacao. Occasionally there are products with raw cocoa as promotional products. The best shopping sources for items containing raw cocoa are organic markets, health food stores, drugstores and the Internet.
Raw cacao nibsThese small crushed cocoa bean pieces are great for topping your cereal or garnishing desserts. Or just nibble some in between meals. If you use the nibs for baking, keep in mind that the ingredients are partly reduced by the heat. : This powder is ground from the unroasted bean. There are powders in natura, but also deoiled; in addition, delicious combinations with spices, already ready to mix with vegetable drink or milk to make a delicious drink. You yourself determine how much sweetness you put in it. It is usually much less sweet than conventional products. Available with delicious combinations of ingredients. A healthy treat. Whole raw cacao beansIf you want to stock up on raw cocoa, the whole beans will of course keep best. With a mortar or food processor, you can then grind it to the desired size and use it to prepare your meal.
Raw cacao is available in various forms: as a whole bean, nibs or powder for drinks (Image: Brigitte Krauss)
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