Raw cacao also retains many more of the nutrients that make it a superfood, since the cacao is cold-pressed to remove the cacao butter instead of being exposed to heat (like natural and Dutch-processed cocoa powders are). One of the biggest benefits of the cacao comes from antioxidants (I’m sure we’ve all heard of those by now!), but it also contains the highest amount of magnesium per milligram of all foods. Why is this important? Magnesium happens to be the mineral that Americans are most lacking in their diets, and a deficiency can lead to muscle cramping (among other things). When I learned this, I immediately thought of those times when I get foot or calf cramps while swimming – sometimes they’re so debilitating that I have to stop and can’t continue until they’re gone! Needless to say, I will be incorporating more raw cacao into my diet from now on (not that I needed any motivation to eat more chocolate).
by Sarah Wilson