Cacao vs. Cocoa - What's the Difference?
One of the questions we often get asked is "what's the difference between cacao and cocoa?" It seems there is a lot of confusion about this in the land of chocolate lovers so as professional cacaoholics, we thought we’d help clear a few things up.
What is cacao?
The cacao bean is actually the source of both cacao and cocoa powders and is what any type of chocolate is originally made from. However, the studies that boast of chocolate’s amazing health benefits are not referring to your average store-bought chocolate bar. The "chocolate" that they’re referring to is in fact cacao. Cacao is made by cold-pressing cacao beans that have been gently heated at low temperatures to remove bacteria and bring out the chocolatey flavour. This process keeps the living enzymes in the cacao and removes the fat (cacao butter). So, in a nutshell, cacao refers to the purest and most natural form of chocolate that is unprocessed and additive free.
What is cocoa?
Although it may look the same as cacao, cocoa is made by roasting cacao beans at high temperatures and is usually processed using an alkalised solution that makes it less acidic and richer in taste. Roasting at high temperatures changes the molecular structure of the cacao bean, reducing the enzyme content and lowering the overall nutritional value. Many cocoa powders also contain additives like sugar.
Why do we often hear the term 'raw' cacao?
We often hear the term 'raw cacao' floating around in the health world. However, if your interpretation of 'raw' means absolutely no heat treatment at all, cacao powder simply cannot be raw! This is because cacao grows in remote regions in tropical countries, so without any form of heat treatment, pathogens and bacteria will not be killed and may remain active in the cacao. Cacao beans are also fermented before being roasted anyway, so beans that are raw (as in simply picked off the tree) are simply not available. As Aduna Super-Cacao is roasted very lightly and over a longer period of time, it is as natural as it can be. Most cacao powders will have much higher heat treatment that destroys the all-important flavanols.
What's so super about Aduna Super-Cacao?
Aduna Super-Cacao is the first cacao on the market that is scientifically proven to support heart health. It is one of only a handful of foods in the world to carry a health claim from the European Food Safety Authority. Made from specially-selected, high-flavanol beans (flavanols are a plant-based antioxidant which help maintain the elasticity of blood vessels), supporting:
- Cardiovascular health
- Elasticity of arteries
- Healthy blood circulation
It is also rich in protein and fibre and a source of magnesium and potassium.
As if that wasn't enough, Super-Cacao is jam-packed with antioxidants and has been clinically proven to improve skin-hydration, making it a beauty must-have.
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