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Old 01-16-2007, 07:41 AM   #1
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Cacao

Has anyone here gone through the research of chocolate being good for you? I have read some things on the matter but was wondering if anyone had really researched it. I see claims being made but you never know which are true or false....I think that chocolate will have health benefits because it is a natural item that grows out of the ground, I just wanted to see if there was some hard research on the subject...

Robert
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Old 01-16-2007, 03:54 PM   #2
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I've done a little research, nothing too heavy. In brief, it's like any other herb. It has its upside and its downside. It really depends on how you look at it. It has medicinal purposes, most of which have been corroborated by research; it isn't tolerated by some individuals; and it definitely helps to widen your girth!

Medicinal Uses: Seeds are given to emaciated patients to gain weight, and to stimulate the nervous system. They can be used to improve digestion and elimination. They are also used to treat anaemia, mental fatigue, depression, poor breast-milk production, tuberculosis, fever, gout, kidney stones and low libido. Also used to relieve congestion during colds. Cacao bark, oil (cacao butter), leaves and flowers have been used to treat burns, bowel dysfunction, cuts and skin irritations. Cocoa butter is used in cosmetic ointments, in pharmacy for coating pills and preparing suppositories, to soften and protect chapped hands and lips and for inflammation of the liver or other organs.

Medicinal Actions: antibacterial, emollient, stimulant, cardiotonic, kidney tonic, antiseptic, diuretic, parasiticide, pilatory, dentifrice, emmenagogue, parasiticide, vasodilator, vulnerary.

Warning:Cocoa and chocolate contain Theobromide, a stimulant which may cause headaches in some people.
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Old 01-16-2007, 05:52 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aguynamedrobert
Has anyone here gone through the research of chocolate being good for you? I have read some things on the matter but was wondering if anyone had really researched it. I see claims being made but you never know which are true or false....I think that chocolate will have health benefits because it is a natural item that grows out of the ground, I just wanted to see if there was some hard research on the subject...

Robert
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One of the effects that chocolate has is to stimulate the endomorphins - the pleasure-producing enzymes in the brain (correct me if I'm wrong with the terminology). Hot chili pepper does the same. These days, everyone is researching everything, and finding good and bad things about all sorts of innocuous food, so I couldn't really confirm if it's good or bad for you. What I do know is that I, personally, who eats very little sweet anything, can easily whack down a whole bar of chocolate when I get the urge!

Yes, it's a natural product; it's actually a seed inside a pod which grows on the trunk (not the branches) of a South American tree. Venezuela has possibly the best cacao in the world, so I'm not talking off the top of my head! Here's a little info from a Venezuelan Chocolate company so you can catch the drift...
***Chocolates El Rey***

However, your question makes me think.."...will have health benefits because it's a natural product..."
Perhaps if we all started using a majority of fresh fruit and vegetables, instead of ready-to-cook, or frozen, or prepackaged, or canned, or processed, then we'd be a far healthier society...
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Old 01-16-2007, 06:56 PM   #4
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I would have to agree with that last statement of yours...using fresh and natural foods are going to best for our bodies...our bodies were designed to run off that fuel(natural foods)...so it makes sense to eat the foods that were designed for our bodies...

One correction...the cacao pods do grow off the branches as well but only the larger ones that are close to the trunk...depends on the tree...I have seen some that are higher up the branches but not as often...most are on the trunk.

I have to agree the El Rey is a Fantastic brand...one of the best in my opinion...I also like cacao grown in Madagascar and Ecuador as well...

Are you a chocolate bar fan? Single origin that is...

Have a good one,
Robert
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Old 01-16-2007, 06:58 PM   #5
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Hey I just saw that you are from Venezuela...Are you close to the El Rey factory area or growing area's? They are just a great brand...I would love to see their home base in Venezuela some time...

Have a good one,
Robert
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Old 01-16-2007, 06:59 PM   #6
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I don't know what it's good for, but I love dark chocolate, not that imitation - milk variety.
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Old 01-16-2007, 09:46 PM   #7
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Thank you Robert. I have always wanted to see a picture of the tree. that was so interesting.
Marge
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Old 01-17-2007, 01:37 AM   #8
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Did you see the pictures on my site? is that what you are refering to? Well I am glad you enjoyed it...so do you have any chocolate in your blood when it comes to cooking? Do you like working with it when making different items?

Robert
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p.s. - I like your quote Marge...
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Old 01-18-2007, 02:06 AM   #9
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Robert,
yes I did go up on your site.
Yes I do have chocolate in my blood..love it but since I am a diabetic I have to go sugar free.
As far as my quote goes, it rings so true. the past two years have been so hard..thank goodness for the friends I have made on DC. They were and still are my support group.
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Old 01-18-2007, 05:13 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aguynamedrobert
Hey I just saw that you are from Venezuela...Are you close to the El Rey factory area or growing area's? They are just a great brand...I would love to see their home base in Venezuela some time...

Have a good one,
Robert
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It's been a while since I went to a Cacao plantation. THe first one I visited was in Chuao, in Aragua state, supposedly , at one time, considered the finest cacao in the world. Alas, the orchards were not well kept.
The second trip was to Carupano, in the East of Venezuela.
I have not been to the El Rey processing plant, but I love their chocolate, especially the extra dark ones. Glorious stuff.
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