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Well and Good: Cacao, Cacao!

Chances are, you’ve heard of one of the most popular trends in the culinary market: cacao nibs. With a funky name and unique appearance, they’re not exactly the rose of the culinary world…or are they?

If your sense of culinary adventure has led you to try these little gems, you’d know that cacao nibs have a rich chocolate flavor. Why? Because cacao nibs are roasted, unprocessed cocoa beans. A great substitute for chocolate chips or candy, they also have hundreds of health benefits. Here are just some of the amazing advantages that cacao nibs offer – they’re not just for health nuts like us!

Commercially produced chocolate loses many of the healthy properties that cocoa offers. More processing equals fewer benefits. The good news is that cacao nibs still posses all these powerful benefits. What are they, you ask? Let’s look at a few of the biggest benefits of the small cacao nib.

Antioxidant Power. In our daily lives, we encounter toxins everywhere. From the environment to processed foods and drinks, it’s difficult, not to mention time consuming, to live a toxin-free life. These toxins influence a process called oxidation in our cells, which can lead to sickness. That’s where antioxidants come in – they’re your body’s front-line of defense against oxidation. What’s this got to do with cacao nibs? They’re full of anti-oxidants! In fact, in testing, cacao has been proven to contain more antioxidants than any food tested. You read that right – cacao nibs have more antioxidants than green tea, blueberries or red wine. That’s huge news! So if your goal includes life-long health and well being, cacao is a great addition to your meal planning and snacking routine.

Brain Booster. We could all use a little help in this department, right? Cacao is an excellent choice if you’re looking to boost cognitive function, focus and mood. Because cacao increases levels of serotonin, endorphins and other neurotransmitters, it can give you a brain boost when you need it most, and help you feel great all day.

Good Fats. Fat gets a bad rap in the mind of most Americans, but without fat, our bodies couldn’t function at optimal levels. The trick is getting the right kinds of fats! Lucky for you, cacao contains oleic acid, a monounsaturated fat also found in olive oil. Oleic acid has been found to raise good cholesterol and even reduce appetite. See? Cacao IS good for you!

Do yourself a favor and try cacao! Stop by the wellness department for a sample… we’d be happy to share the wonders of cacao with you!