If you are going to eat chocolate on Halloween, make sure it is raw chocolate. Raw chocolate usually goes by the name of raw cacao and is usually sold as:

  • Powder that can be mixed into liquids
  • Processed bars segmented into bars

Nibs (which are the center of the hulled raw chocolate that can be eaten raw or added to recipes

Raw chocolate is good for you because —

It is low in calories but sweet and rich enough to stop cravings for deserts

It improves insulin sensitivity, which assists your body with turning carbohydrates into energy

It is a potent source of magnesium, which helps improve your mood, promote serenity and prevent muscle cramps

It contains polyphenols that help reduce inflammation of the joints and muscles

It contains flavanols that improve mood and cognitive function

It contains oleic acid, a monosaturated fat that is good for the brain and liver

It is a low-fat source of high-quality protein

It is a source of fiber, which helps clean waste from the colon

5 Ways to Get More Raw Chocolate into Your Diet

Here are some additional ways to incorporate raw chocolate into your diet to help you stay healthy and even lose weight. Keep in mind that the heat from cooking tends to spoil some of the antioxidants, flavonols, and polyphenols in it, so many of these ideas are inspired by raw vegan cooking.

1. Make a warming cup of Chocolate Almond Black tea. Brew a cup of your favorite black tea (such as Earl Grey, Ceylon, English Breakfast or Chai) and add a splash of raw almond milk and one teaspoon cacao powder or a handful of nibs. Sweeten with stevia and add a dash of cinnamon. The tea is cleansing, reduces bloat and the almond milk provides a bit of protein.

2. Make a raw chocolate green smoothie. Add three tablespoons raw cacao powder, one tablespoon soaked chia seeds, eight ounces of almond or coconut milk, 3 cups shredded spinach, a handful of frozen berries mango chunks and blend well. If the smoothie is a bit tart, add a teaspoon of Maple Syrups Chia seeds add pure vegan protein and the other ingredients are full of super-anti-oxidants that prevent inflammation and nourish the bo

3. Make a chocolate cherry smoothie. Blend 8 ounces almond or coconut milk, two tablespoons soaked chia seeds, 1 frozen banana, I cup fresh or frozen cherries and two heaping tablespoons of raw cacao powder to create a delicious, drink that it can be enjoyed for breakfast or dessert. Bananas and cherries are high in energizing potassium and promote a healthy gut.

4. Add a handful of raw cacao nibs to any granola or trail mix. Cacao nibs add crunch and a cocoa taste to any cereal. Cacao nibs go especially well with dried strawberries, dried cherries, almonds, dried papaya, raisins, and pecans. This makes a low-calorie healthy snack that is full of fiber, vitamins, and protein.

5. Make an easy raw chocolate mousse. Blend 3 tablespoons of raw cacao with 1 mashed avocado, 3 tablespoons almond or cashew butter, ½ cup of almond milk or coconut milk, 1/3 cup prunes or dates, ¼ cup maple syrup and a dash of cinnamon, salt, and pure vanilla extract. Spoon into dessert bowls and chill until firm. Garnish with mint or fruit. The prunes in this recipe facilitate elimination and nut butter is a good source of muscle-building protein.

Make an effort to buy cacao that is free of sugar, organic and that have not been processed with alkali. If you would like to consult with a Toronto naturopath about weight loss, nutrition or cleansing your body then visit the Pinewood Natural Healthcare Centre website that has a list of full services and products at www.pinewoodhealth.ca. We specialize in anti-aging therapies. You can also call our Toronto Office at (416)-656- 8100. We also have an office in Pickering, Ontario at (905)-427-0057. Send an email to info@pinewoodhealth.ca and we would be pleased to answer any question that you have about our holistic health services.


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