Chocolate is the seed of plant?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created September 30, 2011 at 1:01 AM

I thought chocolate came from those big fruit looking things off of trees. But I just found out that it's actually taken from the smaller seeds of the plant and are almost always mixed with coffee seeds. Why don't they harvest the actual fruit b/c we know seeds aren't digestible.



on September 30, 2011
at 01:29 AM

This should be fun...

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on September 30, 2011
at 02:43 AM

The cacao tree (theobroma cacao) bears fruit, inside which are 20-60 seeds, commonly referred to as "cocoa beans".

The fruit pulp can be prepared into a beverage, but it is the beans that ultimately become cocoa.

As you mentioned, foods produced from seeds can be problematic, and cocoa is no different.

It is high in phytates (phytic acid) which actively binds to minerals, preventing them from being absorbed in the digestive tract.

According to information on the Weston A. Price Foundation website, cocoa powder contains 1684-1796 mgs (per 100gms dry weight) of phytic acid. By comparison, white rice has 11.5-66mg, coconut contains 357mg, lentils 779mg, and oats 1174mg.

For more info about turning cocoa beans into cocoa powder, you can check out this post I did a while back.





on September 30, 2011
at 03:02 AM

Apropos of this, I just saw this study, Flavonoid-Rich Cocoa Consumption Affects Multiple Cardiovascular Risk Factors in a Meta-Analysis of Short-Term Studies, thanks to Emily Deans. I can't see the full. Since it's short-term, it could be a hormetic effect, though. Also, I'm not sure about how to tell if the cocoa you are getting counts as "flavonoid-rich".

A growing body of evidence suggests that the consumption of foods rich in polyphenolic compounds, particularly cocoa, may have cardioprotective effects. No review, however, has yet examined the effect of flavonoid-rich cocoa (FRC) on all major cardiovascular risk factors or has examined potential dose-response relationships for these effects. A systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized, controlled trials was performed to evaluate the effect of FRC on cardiovascular risk factors and to assess a dose-response relationship. Inclusion and exclusion criteria as well as dependent and independent variables were determined a priori. Data were collected for: blood pressure, pulse, total cholesterol, HDL cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, TG, BMI, C-reactive protein, flow-mediated vascular dilation (FMD), fasting glucose, fasting insulin, serum isoprostane, and insulin sensitivity/resistance indices. Twenty-four papers, with 1106 participants, met the criteria for final analysis. In response to FRC consumption, systolic blood pressure decreased by 1.63 mm Hg (P = 0.033), LDL cholesterol decreased by 0.077 mmol/L (P = 0.038), and HDL cholesterol increased by 0.046 mmol/L (P = 0.037), whereas total cholesterol, TG, and C-reactive protein remained the same. Moreover, insulin resistance decreased (HOMA-IR: –0.94 points; P < 0.001), whereas FMD increased (1.53%; P < 0.001). A nonlinear dose-response relationship was found between FRC and FMD (P = 0.004), with maximum effect observed at a flavonoid dose of 500 mg/d; a similar relationship may exist with HDL cholesterol levels (P = 0.06). FRC consumption significantly improves blood pressure, insulin resistance, lipid profiles, and FMD. These short-term benefits warrant larger long-term investigations into the cardioprotective role of FRC.



on September 30, 2011
at 03:07 AM

Numbers and citing other nerdy science classes and boring literature means nothing to me. I'm looking for first hand accounts of the actual harvesting and process of chocolate that you eat everyday! Ya know, just your instincts of opening a cocoa fruit and feeling like eating it is a lot more valuable then that you finally understood what "phytic acid" is. '

The picture is more valuabe. So would you eat cocoa in real life?

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