Chocolate: the good, the bad, the ugly

Discussion in 'Back to Basics' started by Ganado, Jul 24, 2015.

  1. Ganado

    Ganado Monkey+++

    These guys are touting their chocolate but they have the facts right and quote data. Notice sugar negated the beneficial uses of chocolate. Link to full website I'd at the end. I edited this into a summary but ore technical is on the link

    Theobroma Cacao, the Latin name for chocolate, means “Food of the Gods” for a reason....

    We’re not talking about junk chocolate in candy bars and sweet desserts; dark chocolate has a long history being used as a healing plant, a mood enhancer, and even an aphrodisiac. So you’re in luck: you can indeed use high quality chocolate to take control of your performance.

    Chocolate Does Good Stuff You Didn’t Know About
    You’ve probably read that chocolate affects your brain by causing the release of the “happiness neurotransmitters” – serotonin, dopamine, and endorphins.[1] Like coffee, chocolate is also a potent source of polyphenol antioxidants.
    But experienced chocolate hackers also know chocolate to be a useful tool for improving performance in lesser-known ways. In fact, cacao exerts a systemic effect on the body, with benefits ranging from improved healthy blood flow and cognition to beneficial alterations in gut bacteria! Here are some of the most important benefits of chocolate

    1. High Pressure Mood Improver?
    One of the most alluring effects of chocolate consumption is its improvement in mood. Your mood matters even more when you’re stressed.

    2. Chocolate makes you eat less?
    One of my favorite effects of chocolate consumption is a reduction in appetite.

    3. Maintenance of a Healthy Cardiovascular System
    Regular chocolate consumption is also associated with improved markers for cardiovascular health.[4] Notably, the polyphenols in cacao increase HDL cholesterol (the good kind), which in turns leads to decreased oxidized LDL cholesterol (the bad kind)[5-6]. Other effects include higher levels of circulating nitric oxide, [7-9] and reduced platelet adhesion,[10-11], resulting in improved endothelial function.

    Importantly, vascular function profoundly modulates insulin-regulated glucose uptake.[14] Thus, it should come as no surprise that dark chocolate consumption also improves healthy levels of insulin sensitivity.[15]

    4. Chocolate makes your skin glow…and may reduce sunburn?
    Another cool thing chocolate does is help you maintain healthy skin by modulating healthy blood flow.

    5. Healthy Inflammation Levels From Powerful Antioxidants (for mice!)
    Chocolate has inflammation-modulating properties. In one study, obese mice supplemented with cocoa....

    6. Chocolate is a prebiotic!
    While many studies assume that it is the cacao polyphenols acting directly to modulate biomarkers, it is most likely the case that at least some of the effect is indirect, and works through interaction with our gut microbiome.

    7. Cellular Rejuvenation (Anti-Aging)
    Last, but certainly not least, cacao can enhance mitochondrial biogenesis, or, the creation of new mitochondria! If you’ve read about Unfair Advantage, you know how important it is to have healthy mitochondria, and more of them. It is the flavanol epicatechin in chocolate which is responsible for mitogenesis.[23]

    Caveat #1: Sugar Reverses Chocolate
    By now you may be interested in picking up some chocolate, but be sure you get one with as little sugar as possible, or even none.

    While research shows that cocoa can have a beneficial effect with regards to maintaining healthy vascular tone and insulin sensitivity, the reverse is true for sugar. Eating sweetened chocolate is still not good for you.

    Beware of chocolate marketed as “sugar free” that may contain unhealthy artificial sweeteners, which are found in the “kryptonite” zone of the Bulletproof Diet Roadmap. The only recommended sweeteners are Stevia, erythritol from non-GMO corn, and xylitol from haedwoods.

    Caveat #2: Chocolate Is More Contaminated With Mold Toxins Than Even Coffee

    Unfortunately, due to intensive farming techniques and poor agricultural, processing, and storage practices, much of the world’s chocolate supply is contaminated with meaningful levels of mold toxins. One of the more insidious and dangerous forms of mycotoxin, ochratoxin A, was present in 98% of samples tested in one study.[36] Of those contaminated with ochratoxin, the study found an 80% co-occurrence of aflatoxin as well. As you may know from reading my other research, mycotoxins amplify each other when more than one is present.

    The problem starts because cacao trees are often infected with fungi and molds, as you’d expect from a tropical crop.[37] Roasting moldy beans destroys the actual fungi, but it doesn’t destroy many of the toxins already produced by the fungi. Cocoa beans can become hosts for mold producing fungi during pre-processing at the farm, but this is particularly likely when beans are dried and stored for extensive periods.[38] The good news is that one study found that the processing of cocoa beans into a finished product resulted in a 93.6% decrease in ochratoxin A.[39] My experience is that mold toxins vary greatly from batch to batch and from brand to brand, and a brand with “clean” chocolate this month may not be clean the following month.

    If you don’t have Bulletproof chocolate, keep the following in mind while selecting and eating chocolate:
    Make sure your chocolate is at least 85 percent dark chocolate;
    Know that European chocolate tends to be lower in mold toxins, as they have stricter government limits than the US;
    Take coconut charcoal with chocolate to bind some of the mold toxins like I always do.

    Is Chocolate Good For You? The Health Benefits of Chocolate
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2015
  2. Motomom34

    Motomom34 Monkey+++

    What? Do you apply it like a mask?
    I personally do not care for chocolate. IMO it is a mental thing. I have seen people woof down chocolate to "get happy" only to feel sick later. Thanks for the link, interesting read.
  3. Ganado

    Ganado Monkey+++

    The link gives all the study data. Most people get sick on the sugar and the mold. Dark 85% chocolate is not very sweet
    pearlselby likes this.
  4. VHestin

    VHestin Farm Chick

    I don't care what anyone else says, chocolate is a food group!!!!!!! Along with bacon...but not together please.
  5. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

  6. ditch witch

    ditch witch I do stupid crap, so you don't have to

    I'm picky about my chocolate. I won't touch Hershey or Dove. I do love me some Chocolove with caramelized ginger in it, and when I make truffles I generally use Godiva. But if I'm feeling spendy, Jacques Torres or Richard Donnelly.
    Tully Mars and Ganado like this.
  7. VHestin

    VHestin Farm Chick

    I've not been big on Hershey's since I found out their sugar tends to be GMO'd
    ditch witch likes this.
  8. Tully Mars

    Tully Mars Metal weldin' monkey

    Ganado likes this.
  9. Ganado

    Ganado Monkey+++

    Anyone have a good hot chocolate recipe with dry'd nonfat milk?

    Mix that you just add hot water

    Mine is
    25% chocolate
    75% non-fat dried milk (you can substitute 1/4 real milk for creamier texture but then you cant just add hot water)
    1 tsp chili powder
    1T cinnamon
    stevia to taste

    ADD WATER, stir, and slurp

    Anyone else have a decent dried mixture? for just add water coco?
  10. Motomom34

    Motomom34 Monkey+++

    You South westerners add a little zing to everything. Chili in coco???
    Tully Mars likes this.
  11. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    Hot chocolate was first served. Unsweetened, and with ground up peppers.
    Ganado likes this.
  12. ditch witch

    ditch witch I do stupid crap, so you don't have to

    Chocolate and chili, or chocolate and coffee, either way it's a winner.
  13. Ganado

    Ganado Monkey+++

    [hrt][hrt][hrt][hrt]just a touch of chili brings out the coco flavor. IDK how it works I just like it![hrt][hrt][hrt][hrt][hrt]
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