There have been a lot of great articles and studies done recently about the benefits of chocolate on health. And, there have been the typical “morning TV talk show” comments about, “See I knew all that chocolate was good for me! Yuk-yuk!” Well, what we think of as “chocolate” amounts to a little actual chocolate and a LOT of sugar… which mitigates the benefits to our health, unfortunately! Sugar, as I have said many times before, is a “metabolic poison!” But, raw, dark, untreated chocolate (as always, foods are healthier in their natural form) does seem to almost be too good to be true health-wise!
Check out this information:
“Epicatechin, a compound found in unrefined cocoa, could have health benefits that rival penicillin and anesthesia in terms of importance to public health. Norman Hollenberg, professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School, has spent years studying the effects of routine cocoa drinking on the Kuna people of Panama. The Kuna, who drink up to 40 cups of cocoa a week, have a less than 10 percent risk of stroke, heart failure, cancer and diabetes. Hollenberg believes that epicatechin should be considered a vitamin, and other nutrition experts believe that epicatechin is so important that it could even warrant a rethinking of how vitamins are defined. Epicatechin is removed from commercial cocoas because it tends to have a bitter taste. It is also found in teas, wine, chocolate and some fruits and vegetables.”
Wow! This is amazing information! Now, here’s what Dr. Joseph Mercola says about this information:
“Consuming chocolate could be far more important than anyone, including me, ever imagined. I remember very clearly reviewing the first studies that came out nearly 10 years ago. I was absolutely convinced that since they were funded by Mars candy there was massive conflict of interest and very little truth to the science. But time has certainly disproved that. Now, there still isn’t any benefit to eating the vast majority of candy that is passed off as chocolate. The major benefits are restricted to the raw and very bitter cacao beans (from which cocoa is processed) and the more they are processed and sweetened the more the benefits are decreased. Does epicatechin-rich cocoa really reduce the risk of the four most deadly diseases — cancer, heart failure, diabetes and stroke — to less than 10 percent? It’s possible. In fact, some experts believe these diseases may eventually be viewed as the result of an epicatechin deficiency.”
I have long thought that we need to “re-visit” the question: “What is a vitamin?” One of the things that I learned in my natural health classes leading to my doctorate was that at one point it was arbitrarily claimed that there “were no more vitamins to be found.” A similar statement was made in 1899 by Charles H. Duell, then Director of U.S. Patent Office, when he said, “Everything that can be invented has been invented.” RIGHT! The supposed “fact” that “there can be no more vitamins” has even led to a more recently discovered co-enzyme (most vitamins function as co-enzymes) being called “Co-Enzyme Q10.” Why not “Vitamin Q?” Well, because, “there can be no more vitamins!” People can be SO arrogant! So… will epicatechin eventually be thought of as an essential vitamin? It certainly sounds important!