Chocolate (Cocoa, Cacao)

Parts Used: Seeds (beans)

Cocoa and it’s derivative, chocolate, are rich in antioxidants that may contribute to longevity.  They also contain compounds that support good digestion, boost blood flow to the heart and help clear up chest congestion

For centuries, Central Americans have used cocoa to treat fever, coughs, and problems associated with pregnancy and childbirth.  They also applied cocoa butter to soothe burns, chapped lips, balding heads and the sore nipples of nursing mothers.  It is also recommended cocoa butter externally as a wound dressing and salve.  Hot cocoa was a treatment for asthma, as a substitute for coffee and as a very useful nutritive for invalids and persons convalescing from acute illness.

Therapeutic Uses:

General degenerative illness prevention, fatigue and lethargy, digestive problems, bronchial congestion, enhanced mood.

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It is high in antioxidants, vitamins C and E and the mineral selenium.  Helps prevent the cell damage that sets the stage for degenerative conditions such as heart disease, stroke, and many cancers.  Cocoa has 10 to 20 percent of the amount of caffeine in coffee — about 13 milligrams a cup compared with instant coffees 65 milligrams and drip coffees 100 to 150 milligrams.  As a result it MAY relieve drowsiness and provide mild stimulation without causing as much jitteriness, insomnia and irritability as coffee.

The Safety Factor

It can cause obesity, heart disease, touch decay, acne, kidney stones, infant colic, heartaches, and heartburn.  Much of this reputation is undeserved.

Chocolate’s fat content may contribute to obesity and heart disease.  But the chocolate in confections is rarely as much of a problem as the high fat, high cholesterol butter and cream used in them.

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