cacao and health

Cacao and Health

This article presents the possible impact of consuming 100% cacao on our health. It shows that it is a good way to improve our health, especially if consumed in its purest form and from a good source.

Cacao, or cocoa beans (Theobroma cacao), is a raw material commonly used in the food industry to produce sweets and drinks. However, there is increasing talk about the health benefits of consuming pure cacao, which is 100% cacao without added sugar or other ingredients.

The health benefits of cacao come from its richness in bioactive ingredients such as polyphenols, flavonoids, theobromine, catechins, ferulic acid, and others. Scientific research indicates a range of positive effects of these components on the human body.

Blood Pressure

First and foremost, consuming pure cacao may influence the reduction of blood pressure. Cacao can also impact the decreased risk of cardiovascular diseases. According to studies, individuals consuming more cacao had a lower risk of cardiovascular diseases compared to those consuming less cacao.

Cognitive Functions

Here are a few ways in which cacao can positively affect cognitive functions:

Improved Blood Flow to the Brain: Flavonoids present in cacao can enhance blood vessels’ ability to dilate, contributing to better blood flow to the brain. Increased oxygen and nutrient delivery can support cognitive functions such as memory and concentration.

Antioxidant Action: Flavonoids act as antioxidants, protecting cells from oxidative stress. They shield neurons from damage caused by free radicals, which can contribute to improved cognitive abilities.

Impact on Neurotransmitters: Theobromine can influence the nervous system by enhancing mood and promoting the release of neurotransmitters like dopamine and serotonin, associated with positive mental states.

Reduction of Inflammation: Flavonoids may reduce inflammation in the body, which is connected to better neural health. Inflammation can negatively affect cognitive functions.

Neuronal Plasticity: Compounds found in cacao can influence neuronal plasticity, the brain’s ability to transform and modify connections between nerve cells. This can positively impact learning and memory.


Stimulation of the Nervous System: Cacao contains theobromine, a natural compound that acts as a mild nervous system stimulant. This can lead to improved energy levels and overall well-being, contributing to a positive mood.

Induction of Pleasure: Cacao contains compounds that influence the secretion of neurotransmitters such as endorphins and serotonin. These neurotransmitters are linked to feelings of pleasure, relaxation, and mood enhancement.

Stress Management: Flavonoids present in cacao can act as stress reducers. They have the potential to reduce cortisol levels, the stress hormone, which can impact overall mental balance and mood.

Enhanced Brain Circulation: Flavonoids and other substances in cacao have properties that improve blood circulation, including circulation to the brain. Improved oxygen supply and nutrient delivery can have positive effects on brain functions, thus affecting overall mood.

Antioxidant Compounds: Cacao is rich in antioxidants, which aid in protecting nerve cells from oxidative stress. By preserving neuronal health, they can contribute to better mental health and mood.


Some studies also indicate a positive impact of consuming cacao on lipid profile, including cholesterol and triglyceride levels.

Improved Blood Vessel Function: Flavonoids in cacao can impact blood vessel dilation, enhancing blood flow and regulating blood pressure. This can support cardiovascular health and influence cholesterol levels.

Reduction of Inflammation: Flavonoids can also act as anti-inflammatory agents, crucial for cardiovascular health. Inflammation can contribute to vessel wall damage and an increased risk of lipid deposits.

Decreased Risk of LDL Oxidation: LDL (low-density lipoprotein) is “bad” cholesterol that, when oxidized, can contribute to plaque formation. Flavonoids may help reduce the risk of LDL oxidation.



Cacao may also have a positive impact on the functioning of the immune system. According to research conducted by scientists at the University of Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, consuming cacao for 14 days resulted in an increase in IgA antibodies levels in athletes. IgA antibodies are responsible for defending the body against infections and diseases.


Due to the presence of flavonoids and other bioactive compounds, cacao may influence the regulation of cytokines and interleukins, thereby affecting the immune system’s functioning:

Reduction of Inflammation: Flavonoids in cacao have anti-inflammatory properties, which can help limit excessive inflammation in the body. This may contribute to reduced production of pro-inflammatory cytokines and minimize potential tissue damage.

Modulation of Immune Response: Studies suggest that cacao’s components may impact the balance between different types of cytokines, promoting a more balanced and appropriate immune response to various challenges.

Support for Regulatory Cells: Some research indicates that cacao may enhance the activity of regulatory cells, such as Treg lymphocytes, which help control the immune response and prevent excessive reactions.

However, this remains an area that requires further research and clinical studies to better understand the mechanisms through which cacao affects cytokine and interleukin regulation and their impact on human health. It is advised to approach this information with moderation and awareness that a diet rich in bioactive components, including flavonoids, can generally have a positive impact on immune system health.


It’s worth remembering

However, it’s worth noting that consuming pure cacao may not be beneficial for everyone. People with histamine intolerance or cocoa allergy should avoid consuming it. Additionally, due to the high content of theobromine, consuming larger amounts of cacao may lead to unwanted side effects, such as hand tremors, dizziness, nausea, or headaches.


In summary, consuming pure cacao may have a beneficial effect on health, primarily due to the presence of bioactive components such as polyphenols, flavonoids, and theobromine. Scientific research has shown that consuming cacao may lead to a reduction in blood pressure, a decrease in the risk of cardiovascular diseases, an improvement in cognitive function, a better mood, and an improvement in blood lipid profile. However, due to possible side effects, cacao consumption should be reasonable and adjusted to individual needs and tolerance.

We recommend 100% cacao offered by us as Gracias Cacao 🙂 You can find our products in the SHOP.