Actually chocolate seems to be the way to almost anyone’s heart, at least to those people that are interested in heart health.
Chocolate or Cacao or Theobroma Cacao is one of nature’s perfect foods. It helps your heart and brain function, gives you energy, relaxes your muscles and helps build bones. It has more antioxidants than blueberries and green tea and is a major source of magnesium. Both Canadians and Americans are magnesium deficient. Canadian estimates are in the 42% range with Newfoundland around 65%. In the US 80% of the population is magnesium deficient.
What Does Magnesium Mean to Your Heart
The heart requires potassium and magnesium to function properly. When heart problems occur magnesium is usually the major mineral that is missing. Magnesium
- lowers blood pressure by decreasing coagulation
- assists in reducing angina pain
- assists with irregular heartbeat
Antioxidants and Your Heart
The antioxidant concentration in Cacao is 10%. It is twice as high as the antioxidant concentration in processed cocoa and ten times as high as blueberries! Cacao contains more antioxidants per cup than a similar serving of red wine or green tea. The antioxidants in Cacao
- reduce bad (LDL) cholesterol
- increase (HDL) good cholesterol
- Increase blood vessels ability to dilate reducing blood pressure
- maintain cell function in the cells of the blood vessels
Alas there are those of us out there that have a terrible reaction to chocolate. Mood swings, anger, depression all because of chocolate. But wait! It isn’t the chocolate that causes problems it is the additives in commercial chocolate that are the culprits.
Adding dairy to cacao actually cancels out the antioxidant benefits by blocking the absorption of the antioxidants. If possible hot chocolate should be made with almond milk or coconut milk. The lower the dairy content the higher the benefits which is why the medical community are recommending Dark Chocolate in moderation.
Better still is developing a taste for raw cacao. Raw cacao is available in most health/natural food stores. You will find it as cocoa, cacao beans and cacao nibs. All forms are wonderful but the cacao nibs are convenient. You can munch them as a snack, use them on salads and put them in breakfast cereal. Sunfood has fruity cacao that owes its sweetness to the residual fruit left on the bean.
Sex and Chocolate
No discussion of chocolate and the heart would be complete without at least a mention of it’s more sensual uses.
There is actually a reason that chocolate and love go together. Throughout the centuries cacao has been believed to have aphrodisiac properties. Various cultures throughout history forbade females from consuming cacao as it was thought to cause wantonness.
Montezuma drank 50 cups per day of chocolate! One more when he was going to have an amorous encounter! That was one heck of a libido…or simply a major addiction. The Marquis De Sade drank chocolate and gave it to his lovers laced with Spanish fly to increase lust. Casanova also drank chocolate prior to his seductions.
Cacao is good for the heart. The ancients knew this and modern science is proving it. Indulge in some Heart Health Food today.
Wolfe David & Shazzie, Naked Chocolate, Maul Brothers Publishing San Diego California
NOTE: I recently began writing for an online magazine. I will be reposting my older stuff for a while till things settle into a routine.