Who doesn’t love chocolate? Let me count the ways and the whys before I give you a healthy chocolate cream recipe.
I’m talking about dark chocolate or cacao – the powder from the cacao bean. When you add sugar and dairy to cacao you get milk chocolate, with significantly less healing properties.
A July 2, 2014 Medscape headline announced that Dark Chocolate May Make Walking Easier. Dark chocolate improves artery flexibility and can help people with peripheral artery disease (PAD) walk further. Previous studies have shown that dark chocolate reduces the incidence of heart disease and stroke. It works by reducing the clumping of platelets that leads to blood clots. Diabetics blood vessels are no longer impaired when they take a daily cacao drink. Cacao assists nitric oxide metabolism, which protects the heart and relaxes blood vessels lowering blood pressure.
Researchers are so excited with their findings that they are going to mess it all up by trying to isolate what’s really doing all this great work and put it in a pill! Their partner in this crime is the Mars Candy Company with a patent on the extraction of flavanols from cacao.
In his article Dark Chocolate Health Benefits, Dr. Mercola lists 16 different benefits. But nobody mentions the real reason dark chocolate is so powerful.
Most people who read my work have already guessed that it’s MAGNESIUM. All the claims for health benefits of dark chocolate are the same ones attributed to magnesium. The highest amounts of magnesium are found in seaweed and dark chocolate. Like most people I’ll go with the chocolate.
According to an online source, Authority Nutrition, a 100 gram (3.5 oz; 7 TBSP) bar of dark chocolate with 70-85% cocoa contains:
• 11 grams of fiber.
• 67% of the RDA for Iron.
• 58% of the RDA for Magnesium.
• 89% of the RDA for Copper.
• 98% of the RDA for Manganese.
• It also has plenty of Potassium, Phosphorus, Zinc and Selenium.
Seven TBSP is a lot of raw cacao, so I’m not suggesting that you eat that amount in your daily diet. And since you don’t, make sure to take ReMag, my highly absorbed magnesium, every day
Here’s a chocolate desert that I make and put in IBS for Dummies Cookbook.
Carolyn’s Chocolate Banana Cream Pudding
Preparation time: 5 minutes
Cooking time: None
Yield: 2 servings
4 small frozen bananas, cut into rounds
4 ounces full-fat coconut milk
2 tablespoons cacao powder
Strawberries or blueberries, for serving
1. Pulse the bananas, coconut milk, and cacao powder in a food processor or high-speed blender until smooth and creamy.
2. Serve with sliced strawberries and/or blueberries. Eat immediately to avoid browning.
Tip: Cacao powder is all the rage on the Raw culinary scene, so it’s getting easier to obtain at health food stores or online at stores like VitaCost.
Per serving: Calories 152; Fat 6.7 g (Saturated 5.7 g); Cholesterol 0 mg; Sodium 5 mg; Carbohydrate 25.4 g (Fiber 3.5 g); Protein 2.2 g; Sugar 12.4 g.
Carolyn Dean MD ND
The Doctor of the Future®
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