DARK CHOCOLATE

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Dark chocolate may not only help you shed those unwanted pounds, it provides a host of healthy benefits that puts other indulgences to shame.

Consuming an ounce of dark chocolate three days a week can help your body digest the food you consume, inhibit insulin resistance, reduce stress and cortisol levels and may prevent you from overeating. It is also proven to lower blood pressure, increase circulation, create a feeling of bliss and stimulate energy.

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A 100 gram bar of dark chocolate with 70-85% cocoa contains :

*11 grams of fiber.
*67% of the RDA for Iron.
*58% of the RDA for Magnesium.
*89% of the RDA for Copper.
*98% of the RDA for Manganese.

It also has plenty of potassium, phosphorus, zinc and selenium.

There are three types of fat in dark chocolate:

The good, monounsaturated fat called oleic acid, and two saturated fats, palmitic and steric acid.
The good news is that these fats do not affect your cholesterol levels and can be considered a healthy fat; this is essential for those who are trying to lose weight.

Losing weight requires that you consume fewer calories than you burn each day.
Nibbling on a few unsweetened cacao nibs before each meal may help you make healthier choices when it comes to meal time.
When combined with a healthy diet and exercise, dark chocolate can give you an extra boost toward reaching your weight-loss goals.

Raw cocoa

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Cacao bean (also Anglicized as cocoa bean, often simply cocoa and cacao; Mayan: kakaw; Nahuatl: is the dried and fully fermented fatty bean of Theobroma cacao, from which cocoa solids and cocoa butter are extracted.

They are the basis of chocolate, as well as many Mesoamerican foods such as mole sauce and tejate.

The cacao tree is native to the Americas. It may have originated in the foothills of the Andes in the Amazon and Orinoco basins of South America, current day Colombia and Venezuela, where today, examples of wild cacao still can be found.
However, it may have had a larger range in the past, evidence for which may be obscured because of its cultivation in these areas long before, as well as after, the Spanish arrived. It was first cultivated by the Olmecs at least 1500 BC in Mexico.

The cocoa bean was a common currency throughout Mesoamerica before the Spanish conquest.

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