-Raw Chocolate versus Processed Chocolate-

I don’t know about where you live, but here in Texas as the stores packed away the Christmas aisles full of treats, their shelves were quickly restocked with the next holiday items, which here in Texas is Valentine’s Day fare. Everywhere we turn now, in the stores or online, we see boxes of chocolate that can be purchased to share with the ones we love.

The fact that we want to share something good with those we care about brings to mind the quality of the product offered. Do the ingredients in the chocolate treat that we choose to share matter, let’s take a look…

Raw Chocolate

First, we should define “chocolate.” Chocolate is a processed product that consists of cacao seeds/beans which are ground, fermented, roasted, and/or shelled, and often combined with a sweetener or flavoring agent.

Raw chocolate may include a variety of ingredients, but at a basic level can consist of raw cacao, raw honey, and coconut oil. So, we will take a look at what some of the research indicates about these three raw chocolate ingredients.

RAW CACAO: Raw cacao refers to the tree (Botanical name: Theobroma cacao) of which the edible parts, the cacao pods and beans inside them, can then be processed to make cocoa powder or chocolate after being dried and fermented. The edible cacao beans are the raw cacao.