Monday, 28 November 2011

Dark chocolate/cocoa

A while ago, I searched the internet for different effects spices may have. I know that cocoa is not a spice, but I searched a little bit about that too. These things are so incredibly interesting and I'm considering writing my essay on my last semester on spices and stuff. It's incredible how many positive effects it may have on our bodies.
I wrote what I found in a document but didn't write any sources so I unfortunately don't remember where I found these things. I would like to write more about spices here on the blog, but we'll take the cocoa first before we take on the spices!

 First of all, as with sooo many other things, cocoa is best to eat raw. When you heat it up, many antioxidants it contains gets destroyed. This also means that it matter what kind of dark chocolate you eat.. Some of them have been heated up too much so it can't give you any good health effects. You can also try to find raw cocoa in the store (normal ones have been heated) and put in smoothies or something else. Just don't heat it up yourself if you buy it raw ;)

As I mentioned, cocoa contains A LOT of antioxidants. Catechins, which are high in the cocoa bean, has both positive and essential qualities. Studies suggest that some of these flavanoids can prevent stroke and have a positive effect in treating cancer as well as HIV. A swedish newspaper asked the French laboratory Eurofins to analyze the levels of the antioxidants/flavanoid which has been proved to be very important for our health. Epikatechin is the most important of these ones. Seven varieties with a cocoa content of about 70 percent were investigated. Most flavonoids per kilogram of these had: 1888 Origin, JD Gross, ICA Selection
Three that had a much lower amount of flavonoids were: Marabou Premium, Lindth Excellent and Änglamark. (Not sure where the 7th went...). For you swedish ppl - as you see, both marabou and lindth, two of our most common brands of dark chocolate, did not get a good result in this study. I have tried to find both 1888 Origin and JD Gross but haven't found them in any store. But ofcourse pretty much every ICA store will have the ICA selection dark chocolate. I have started eating that one.. A tip - the cranberry one is awesome, I think that one has about 72 % cocoa if I don't remember wrong.. They also have one with 74 %.

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