"Our cacao bar is a brain and heart superfood.
We keep it pure so you can benefit from a boost in concentration, a happy mood, increased heart-health, longevity, great digestion, and natural stress relief!"
5 Important Factors to Healthy Chocolate
Cacao has been used for centuries to boost energy, enhance mood and concentration. Therefore, chocolate must be healthy, “but only the dark kind”, they say - you’ve probably heard it before. But it’s not quite as simple. So, let’s break it down into 5 steps!
Quality of the beans
Chocolate for a healthy brain
Raw vs dark chocolate
1. Quality of the Beans
Like it is with any kind of food, the higher the quality of the ingredients is, the better the finished product. In chocolate, it starts with the harvesting of the golden-orange pods from the Theobroma Cacao tree. Since climate, soil composition, the amount of sun and shade, time of harvesting and fermentation are all factors that contribute to the cacao bean’s exquisite flavour, their taste can vary significantly depending on growing conditions and region.
At the Good Chocolatier, we expect healthy chocolate to be made solely from organic and fairly traded cacao beans without the use of synthetic herbicides, pesticides, GMOs or fertilizers.
Our Arriba Nacional Criollo cacao is from the upriver areas of the Guayas River in the lowland provinces of Ecuador. The bean has a very fine flavour profile, distinct floral aroma and is handled with care.
2. Ingredient Combination
When we talk about healthy chocolate, the first ingredient should always be cacao. No matter if 51%, 60% or 90%. The higher the percentage simply means that there are fewer ‘other’ ingredients than chocolate, which are often sugar, oils, additives, and flavours.
Most chocolate is made with cane sugar, which has a high glycemic index, raises blood glucose levels quickly and provides no nutrition aside from quick energy. Replacing this kind of sugar with an alternative can provide extra nutritional value, reduce the risk of getting a ‘sugar high’, and increase the energy felt from the cacao.
Good chocolate is perfect without anything besides cacao – a combination of cacao paste and cacao butter, and sugar. Sometimes, a flavour can add to the chocolate’s exquisiteness. Best is a bar of chocolate with natural flavours such as nuts, berries, fruits, essential oils, and herbs, which all contribute to the chocolate’s overall nutritional value. On the contrary, adding things like soy lecithin, palm oils and other nonessential ingredients might add to the chocolate’s smoothness but not overall health benefits.
3. Main Benefits
The most known benefits of eating good chocolate are:
Increased mental performance
Improved heart health
Enhanced mood & endorphin production
Blood sugar stabilization
Reduced sugar cravings
The better the quality of the cacao and the more carefully it is made into chocolate, the more these benefits can be felt.
4. Chocolate for a Healthy Brain?
Besides some macronutrients essential for the health of our body, cacao also has some less common advantages that are beneficial to the brain! Here are 4 of my favourites:
1) Cacao contains 𝗧𝗿𝘆𝗽𝘁𝗼𝗽𝗵𝗮𝗻, an amino acid present in small quantities in chocolate. It is linked to the production and release of serotonin, a neurotransmitter strongly associated with a reduction in anxiety and feelings of happiness
2) It also contains 𝗔𝗻𝗮𝗱𝗮𝗺𝗶𝗱𝗲, which is responsible for the release of dopamine into the human body and gives us feelings of well-being
3) Cacao contains 𝗧𝗵𝗲𝗼𝗯𝗿𝗼𝗺𝗶𝗻𝗲 - A weak stimulant that works alongside caffeine to produce the characteristic ‘high’ that many people experience after getting their chocolate fix. It can last for 2-4 hours and gives you incredible clarity of mind.
4) Last but not least, chocolate encourages the release of a neurotransmitter called 𝗣𝗵𝗲𝗻𝘆𝗹𝗲𝘁𝗵𝘆𝗹𝗮𝗺𝗶𝗻𝗲, a natural antidepressant and - a long word that has also gone by “the love drug”
5. Raw vs Dark Chocolate
Did you know there's a difference between raw and dark chocolate? The truth is that the two aren't even close to being the same.
𝗥𝗮𝘄 𝗰𝗮𝗰𝗮𝗼 is unroasted, meaning the cacao bean is picked, fermented and dried, husked, and crushed up in a chocolate melanger to be further processed into smooth chocolate. The taste of raw chocolate is much closer to the cacao fruit itself rather than conventional chocolate, often unfolding the cacao’s natural, origin dependant flavour profile. It is also much more potent than chocolate made from roasted beans, as nutrients can easily reduce as roasting heat increases.
𝗗𝗮𝗿𝗸 𝗖𝗵𝗼𝗰𝗼𝗹𝗮𝘁𝗲 is made from roasted beans. 𝗪𝗵𝗶𝗹𝗲 𝗱𝗮𝗿𝗸 𝗰𝗵𝗼𝗰𝗼𝗹𝗮𝘁𝗲 CAN 𝗯𝗲 𝗶𝗻𝗰𝗿𝗲𝗱𝗶𝗯𝗹𝘆 healthy when processed carefully - on lower rather than higher temperatures and with natural & clean ingredients - it is also very easy to make dark chocolate less beneficial when
6 Reasons Craft Chocolate is Healtier Than Commercial Chocolate
High Cacao Percent
The first ingredient with the highest percentage will always be cacao.
Low Glycemic Index
We use sugars with a lower glycemic index and higher nutritional value such as Maple Syrup, coconut sugar, local Honey, Raw Manuka Honey, and dates.
It is as pure as it gets – No fillers, preservatives, or major allergens.
It is processed with low temperatures to achieve maximum nutrient conservation.
We offer healthy dark, and healthy RAW chocolate – whereas the raw form is the purest and most potent of all.
Chocolate is good for your digestive system, for a healthy heart and for concentration – just make sure you choose the GOOD kind.
Our company's mission is to provide people with the purest and most natural chocolate, while also giving them a healthy option. All of our chocolates are handcrafted using only high quality ingredients. We take pride in sourcing all of our cocoa beans from countries that support sustainable farming practices and have an excellent reputation for producing the world’s finest cacao beans.