The Amazing Cocoa bean!
“Cocoa beans contain important nutrients like protein, vitamins, minerals, fibre and flavonoids etc. which are linked with a number of health benefits”
Whenever one thinks of a dessert – chocolate is the first thing that comes to mind! And this heavenly delicious food comes from the humble cocoa bean which is the raw unprocessed form of chocolate. But did you know that your favourite dessert or treat is also is a powerhouse of nutrition? Cocoa beans contain important nutrients like protein, vitamins, minerals, fibre, flavonoids etc. which are linked with a number of health benefits. Here, we take a look at all of these positive impacts on health.
Promotes A Healthy Body
Cocoa beans act as a protective agent against heart disease due to its pdyphenolic contents. The power of flavonoids and presence of essential minerals and vitamins heap in lowering the LDL levels, improve blood flow to the heart and also decrease the chances of plaque formation in the arteries.
The bulk amount of fibre and epicatechin flavonoids found in raw cocoa beans reduces the adverse effect of blood sugar. It reduces insulin resistance and sensitivity in people with IGT too.
Balances Blood Pressure
The bio active components in cocoa beans cause improved blood flow to the artenes by promoting dilation, strength and health of the blood vessels.
A high content of magnesium in cocoa beans boosts energy levels in the human body.
Fights Tooth Decay
The powder from raw cocoa beans helps in strengthening teeth enamel and delays tooth decay.
Cocoa beans are a rich source of fibre, which stimulates digestive enzymes.
Promotes A Healthy Mind
If you are sad and in the mood of doing nothing. cocoa will make you happy, because the chemical phenylethylamine present in raw cocoa beans can stimulate the secretion of the ‘feel good’ hormone.
Stress Releasing Effect
Health plus taste in food is a very rare combination to find. Cocoa is one such example which can reduce stress levels by suppressing the secretion of the stress hormone cortisol.
Regulates Hormonal Imbalance
Cocoa also reduces mood swings by promoting the secretion of the ‘feel good’ chemical serotonin.
Improves Cognitive Function
Threobromine in cocoa is the reason for improved brain function as well as improved cognitive function in elderly people with mental impairment.
Promotes Healthy Skin And Hair
The lists of health benefits are not yet finished. The bio-active compounds in cocoa beans provide protection against sun damage, detoxifies the skin, increases blood circulation to the skin as well as to the scalp which promotes healthy hair growth and makes the skin well-nourished and soft.
Include Cocoa Beans In Your Daily Life
- As A Taste Enhancer
- Roasted cocoa beans can be added to different vegetables and fruit smoothies.
- Can be added to various beverages like coffee, any kind of milk or fruit shake in the form of powder.
- Can be used as toppings on muffins, puddings and fruit custards.
- Can be include as a flavouring agent in the preparation of desserts like cakes, pastries. tarts, mousse or protein balls, energy bars etc.
- Can be add to breakfast cereals like oats porridge, cornflakes. vegetable sandwich etc.
For Beauty Treatment
Add two tablespoons of smashed papaya. one teaspoon of cocoa beans in powder form and one teaspoon of honey. Mix them together to make a thick paste and apply as a face pack for glowing skin.
Add one teaspoon of raw cocoa beans powder, one tablespoon of oatmeal powder and two tablespoons of yoghurt. Mix all the ingredients properly and apply it on the face for smooth and soft skin.
Add two tablespoons of smashed banana, two teaspoons of cold milk and one teaspoon of cocoa beans powder together, make a pack and apply it on the face/body for it to work wonders on your tan.