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What is Cocoa? – Types, Nutrients, and More

What is Cocoa?

cocoa is a berry of tropical origin that comes from the cocoa tree, which is the primary component of chocolate. Cocoa beans make chocolate by extracting cocoa beans from two by-products: cocoa mass, which is a solid, and cocoa butter, a fat. But, first, let’s review the types of cocoa plants and the leading cocoa-producing countries.

cocoa

The Cocoa Tree And Its Types

The tree is a small tree that grows in tropical environments. The tree typically produces between 15 and 20 fruits, called pods, and each pod contains between 20 and 60 beans. In addition, the cocoa tree needs high temperatures throughout the year, regular rains, and constant attention to produce cocoa beans properly.

Found The Following Types Of Cocoa

Forester is the main  plant used in the mass production of chocolate bars. Cocoa farmers rely on the disease resistance and bean production of these plants to achieve the large-scale cultivation required by the market, as these plants are also easy to care for, require minimal maintenance, and at the same time provide flavor. So stands why the Forester cocoa varieties, that is, ordinary , represent 95% of the world’s it production.

Creole: these trees produce a bean with a complex aromatic flavor, which is much appreciated. The Criollo  tree is more difficult to grow because various diseases plague it. In addition, due to the low production rate, many farmers stopped cultivating this variety. And also increasing the value of each grain produced.

Trinitarian: The Trinitarian  tree is a hybrid of the Forester and Criollo It trees. This plant was born from an attempt to combine the resistance of the Forester tree with the flavor of Criollo  beans to produce a tasty bean that is at the same time easier to grow, resistant to diseases, and appreciated as a bean.

What Nutrients Does It Provide You?

Among the minerals found in it magnesium, copper, potassium, and iron. Magnesium, copper, and potassium play a cardiovascular protective role, while iron is found significantly in dark or bitter chocolate.

It is rich in polyphenols, catechins, anthocyanins, and proanthocyanins, which have antioxidant properties and can directly influence insulin resistance and thus reduce the risk of Diabetes. On the other hand, they have anti-inflammatory properties, translating into cardioprotective effects.

In addition, they modulate the intestinal microbiota, which for several years studied for its multiple health benefits And also not only at the gastrointestinal level but of all kinds, such as strengthening the immune system, producing vitamins, and even reducing the risk of Diabetes.

However, it is essential to consider these health benefits given It . When consumed in high energy density chocolate. And also with added sugars and other ingredients, it can have adverse effects, such as weight gain.

How Much Does Cocoa Cost?

A kilo of cocoa beans costs around 100 Mexican pesos, and 250 grams (g) of powder costs 80 Mexican.250g of organic it  beans can cost between $ 200 and $ 300 in Mexican pesos.

How Is It Recommended To Consume It?

It consumes in the form of cocoa beans or shavings or powder form. When consumed in chocolate, it should be bitter or dark with a high percentage of It(above 70%).

As a Cosmetic

Cocoa butter can also be used as a cosmetic to treat specific skin problems such as wrinkles, furrows, or even the hair.

Story of Cocoa

It was cast-off by the Mayan, Aztec, and Inca tribes over 2,500 years ago. And also primarily as a medicinal remedy or as a bargaining chip. However, its introduction in Europe did not come until the 15th century after the colonization of America, when necessary, it by other foods like potatoes or tomatoes.

Although introduced at the time, the recipe for the chocolate drink that existed was not to the taste of the majority of the population, who considered it very bitter. And also it not until the 19th century that its consumption began to spread due to the appearance of the chocolate industry in this century. And also which applied the first additions of sugar and other components that gave the chocolate a more palatable flavor.

Benefits of Cocoa

In recent years, many studies have verified the beneficial properties of It , especially in the cardiovascular system. Flavonoids, commonly found in vegetables, are also in It and antioxidants that help prevent specific heart disease.

Also Read: What are the Benefits of Spinning?

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