It’s true—cacao powder (cocoa) helps your blood pressure.Even better news is that two meta-analyses from Harvard show more reasons to look at chocolate as a health food.While I have always advocated eating high quality dark chocolate, this research carves a deeper spot for chocolate’s role in the Bulletproof Diet.
But I digress…
The chemicals within chocolate that support your cardiovascular system are calledflavonoids. Flavonoids are the largest family of polyphenols found in cocoa. They have all the biohacking benefits you’d expect such as lowering blood pressure, increasing blood vessel health, and improving cholesterol levels.(1,2)
Harvard epidemiologist and nutritionist Eric Ding, Ph.D., found that consumption of flavonoid-rich cocoa was linked to reductions in risk factors for diabetes, a major contributor to cardiovascular disease. Resistance to the hormone insulin, which helps regulate blood sugar, favorably dropped among people who consumed cocoa compared to those who didn’t.
“Our research found that high-flavanol cocoa both lowers insulin and insulin resistance – thereby improving sensitivity. The body gets better at pulling dangerous sugar out of the blood stream [when cocoa is consumed], which is good for fighting against diabetes.”
“High flavanol cocoa improves blood flow via endothelial function (as measured by improved flow-mediated dilation)—which benefits the entire body. Good circulation is the key to heart and brain health, and diabetes risk is increased by poor endothelial blood flow. Interestingly, erectile dysfunction is also fundamentally a circulation problem—Viagra® is also shown to improve flow-mediated dilation, similar to cocoa.”(3)
His research and another Harvard study published in the spring of 2012 together showed that cocoa counters the effects of obesity connected to insulin resistance.
We avoid this insulin resistance by eating the Bulletproof Diet, but his findings contribute substantial results towards a healthier cardiovascular system. If cocoa can be compared to Viagra® pertaining to blood flow, than cocoa is doing something right.
Continuing the Chocolate Love Affair
High blood pressure is an important risk factor for cardiovascular disease attributing to about 50% of cardiovascular events worldwide and 37% of cardiovascular related deaths in Western populations.(4) The knowledge of cocoa’s blood pressure benefits really ought to be commonplace.
Many Bulletproof readers already know that high quality chocolate has a lot of health benefits, but after discovering substantial problems with chocolate processing quality in today’s mass-produced chocolate industry I created Upgraded Chocolate andUpgraded Cacao Butter using the highest standards, one I designed myself to minimize the formation of toxins from mold and fermentation in chocolate. The Bulletproof process used to produce Upgraded Chocolate minimizes mycotoxins and retains 86% of the beneficial compounds throughproper chocolate selection, permaculture, processing, fermentation, and storage.
Through these new findings, we have one more reason to continue a love affair with chocolate! The flavonoids found in cocoa increase the formation of endothelial nitric oxide, which decreases blood pressure.(5) It can upgrade your cardiovascular system and improve many vital functions of the body that will be discussed in an upcoming post on the 19 benefits of chocolate.
Chocolate is a food you may have mistakenly given up in the past, but the evidence tells me that eating high quality, low mold toxin dark chocolate is good for me. Eating as much as 45 grams a day may not only be beneficial, it’s delicious! If you’re looking for a perfect Bulletproof snack–chocolate can be a great choice. It’s a heck of a lotbetter than a Powerbar!
What do you do with your high quality dark chocolate?
To read more, check out - https://www.bulletproofexec.com/harvard-scientists-compare-blood-flow-from-chocolate-to-viagra/