The best benefits of cocoa powder for our body and beauty. Cocoa powder helps us to improve circulation, lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol and blood sugar, for more beautiful and healthier skin, and many other benefits.
What do we need to know about cocoa powder?
Cocoa is obtained from the fruit of the woody plant Theobroma cacao, which originates from the tropics of America. From these fruits, you get cocoa mass (powder and cocoa fat) and then from it and chocolate.
In fact, this is the main use of cocoa. Cocoa powder is also used as a hot beverage.
As many of us already know that the beneficial effects of dark chocolate are primarily due to cocoa powder.
8 Benefits of cocoa powder for our health
In addition, more about cocoa powder and its benefits, why, and in what way it is so useful for our health.
1) Cocoa powder is a rich source of polyphenols that provide several health benefits
Polyphenols are natural antioxidants that are commonly found in fresh foods. They are mainly found in (fruits and vegetables), but also in teas, chocolate, and wine.
Their action is associated with numerous health benefits.
Such as reducing chronic inflammatory processes, improved circulation, lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol and blood sugar.
Cocoa is considered one of the richest sources of polyphenols in nature. Especially rich is their richness in flavonoids, which have powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory action.
However, processing and acting on cocoa with too much heat and alkaline agents can lead to the loss of many of these beneficial components.
This means that not all cocoa products will be particularly rich in them.
2) By increasing the level of one molecule, cocoa can help reduce high blood pressure
This is exactly how cocoa, both in the form of chocolate and cocoa powder, can significantly and successfully help lower blood pressure.
The present flavonoids are considered responsible for this positive effect. Studies show that they can improve nitrogen oxide levels.
Nitric oxide can help relax blood vessels. At the same time and consequently, to reduce high blood pressure.
3) Cocoa can help reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke
In addition, to lowering blood pressure, the reason for this effect of cocoa is its reducing effect in relation to the “bad” LDL cholesterol in the blood.
Lowering blood pressure and improving your cholesterol profile inevitably lead to improved cardiovascular health.
All of this contributes to a significantly reduced risk of heart attack and stroke.
An analysis of nine scientific studies with more than 150,000 respondents found that those who consumed more dark chocolate had a significantly lower risk of heart attack and stroke over a lifetime.
Another Swedish study gives us results according to which this positive effect of chocolate can be obtained only with moderate consumption (up to 30g per day), and larger quantities could create some problems.
So consume moderate dark chocolate and cocoa powder to have a long and healthy life.
4) Polyphenols also help for better brain function
Logically, improved blood circulation also affects the better supply of the brain with blood and all its nutrients. In addition, flavonoids can cross the brain barrier and participate in biochemical processes.
These are the processes by which neurons and the most important molecules for the functioning of the brain are created.
In one study, younger subjects included cocoa products with a high percentage of flavonoids in their diet.
After just one week, the circulation in the brain improved by 8%, and in two weeks – by 10%.
Scientific studies also indicate a positive effect of flavonoids in the elderly, but also in people who already have mental disorders.
Cocoa can also have a positive effect on mood and symptoms of depression.
This positive effect is thought to be due again to the flavonoids, ie the transition of tryptophan to the natural mood stabilizer – serotonin.
In fact, it is the feeling of satisfaction we feel after consuming chocolate. One study found reduced stress in pregnant women who regularly consumed dark chocolate.
Another is that cocoa-containing drinks can contribute to calming and pleasantness.
5) Cocoa flavonoids can reduce the symptoms of type 2 diabetes
Although it is known that excess chocolate is not recommended at all and is good for diabetics, cocoa powder actually has some anti-diabetic effect.
Cocoa flavonoids can slow down the digestion of carbohydrates and their absorption in the digestive tract.
They also then improve insulin secretion, reduce inflammation, and stimulate the “intake” of sugar from the blood into muscle cells.
All of this has been confirmed by scientific studies, and there are several studies that say that a diet rich in flavonoids prevents the development of type 2 diabetes.
6) Cocoa can help you lose weight in more surprising ways
It may sound paradoxical, but even dark chocolate cocoa can help you lose weight. This property is due to the ability of cocoa to help regulate metabolic processes.
Or simply put, a decrease in appetite and inflammatory processes, an increase in fat oxidation, and a feeling of satiety.
We will comment on two studies.
One says that people who consumed dark chocolate more regularly had a lower BMI than people who consumed less often despite people eating more calories in the first group.
Another study, which looked at individuals trying to lose weight, found that consuming dark chocolate further helped them lose weight because those who consumed it had better results than the control group.
7) Theobromine and theophylline from cocoa can help people with asthma
Asthma is a chronic inflammatory disease that causes the airways to close and become inflamed.
Asthma is dangerous because at times it can even be life-threatening.
Theobromine and theophylline may help with this condition. Theobromine is a similar component to caffeine and can help with chronic cough.
Cocoa contains about 2g of this substance, per 100g.
Theophylline, on the other hand, helps dilate the lungs and airways and reduce inflammation in them.
However, clinical studies are needed for this effect of cocoa.
8) Cocoa shows antibacterial action, but also a number of benefits for the skin
Cocoa contains several components with antibacterial and immunostimulatory action, which, above all, can contribute to the health of the oral cavity.
It has been shown in some studies to be successful in dealing with common oral bacteria that cause tooth decay. Chocolate is considered to be one of the causes of acne, but studies point to the exact opposite.
Cocoa polyphenols are responsible for this, in fact, they have a number of positive effects on the skin.
Increasingly, research shows that regular consumption of cocoa can help protect against the sun’s UV rays.
Cocoa powder can improve the circulation of blood vessels in the skin, but also improve its texture and hydration.
Cocoa powder is very important to us because it really offers us benefits that we should use in the best possible way. Cocoa powder is an ingredient in making chocolates.
Especially dark chocolate is very healthy, above all, due to the large percentage of cocoa in its composition. The more cocoa, the healthier the chocolate.
Otherwise, one of the best and healthiest ingredients in cocoa powder are flavonoids.
Cocoa powder helps us to improve circulation, lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol and blood sugar, etc.
In any case, a moderate amount of cocoa powder is best for the best health benefits.