Tagged: raw chocolate

Chocolate and Heavy Metals


Chocolate has always been a revered food but a recent review of commercial chocolate in Brazil found some chocolate has high levels of two heavy metals. The two metals examined are lead and cadmium. Scientists from the University of Campinas in Brazil conducted the study which was published by the American Chemical Society’s Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. In the study researchers looked at 30 different brands including milk, white and dark chocolate confections.

The levels of lead and cadmium found in these products is believed to come from the soils in which they are grown. The saturation range varied by product but the all were above the safety levels recommended by the World Health Organization. The levels of lead and cadmium were highest in dark chocolate and chocolate with high cacao levels. While dark chocolate is considered to be healthier than white and milk chocolate it appears in this case they are not.

These findings are augmented by a lab testing of major raw and organic cacao products popular in the raw food community. A group known as the Forensic Food Lab has conducted its own study. According to its findings Essential Living Foods Raw Cacao Nibs are the least contaminated among those tested,  you can view the full list by visiting this link.  We at Zebra Organics hand select our products and our aim is to provide you with a unique selection of healthy products. We do carry a range of cacao products and we pleased to carry Essential Living Foods Cacao Nibs. 

In general heavy metal pollution is something we all need to be aware of. It would be nice to believe we all live in a pristine environment but we don’t. In fact the air we breath each day contains varying levels of pollutants including heavy metals. Three of the most common metals found in the air we breath are cadmium, lead and mercury and they emitted mainly as a result of various industrial activities. While the levels in the air are low they do build up in soils and the plants take them up and they enter the food chain.

In health,
Zebra Organics

What is so special about Raw Cacao?

Have you ever wondered what is so special about raw chocolate?

Isn’t raw chocolate just like regular chocolate? The answer is “No”! Raw Chocolate is a superfood par excellence and its  anti-oxidant quantity far exceeds that of cooked/conventional chocolate

About 8 years ago there was a big stir in the raw food world when Davide Wolfe, a big raw chocolate fan, tried his first raw cacao smoothie. This was in Maui and since David began introducing the world to raw chocolate the world has not been the same.

There is something extra special about Chocolate and if you’ve ever had a raw chocolate fruit you know. There is magic in those chocolate pods. Fresh chocolate beans have a distinct violet color, which is very uncommon in foods. The uncommon nature of chocolate is also reflected in its ultra high anti-oxidant content.

Many years ago when raw chocolate was just hitting the stores, I was working for Nature’s First Law. As part of the early team of raw chocolate pioneers, I conducted a lot of research into the health benefits of this super food. And, one of the most astounding facts I continued to come across was that Chocolate is an Amazing Anti-Oxidant.

Chocolate Anti-Oxidant
Yes, it is true, Chocolate is ranked #1 in anti-oxidant flavoniod compounds. Chocolate has more anti oxidants per capita than any other food! The anti oxidants in chocolate account for up to nearly 10% of its total content. That means chocolate is about 10% anti-oxidant, this is a staggering percentage, something that is rarely encountered in a food. Early on in my research I learned that the milk fats used in making certain chocolate inhibit the anti oxidant capacity of chocolate. This early research I came across was all conducted with regular cooked chocolate. They had yet to discover the powers of chocolate in the raw. The antioxidant compounds found in unprocessed chocolate include heart healthy phenols, of which chocolate seems to have the most.  

Further investigation into the world of chocolate and health reveals what most of you can intuit. That is the less processed chocolate is the better it is for you. So as processing increases health benefits decrease. At the very top of the list would be fresh raw chocolate straight from the jungle, next would be raw chocolate beans and nibs and next on the list would be raw chocolate powder.


Chocolate is often associated with love and comes in heart shaped boxes, this interesting correlation pairs well with modern research. Which has noted that the anit-oxidants in chocolate are particularly good for the heart. The compounds in chocolate help to reduced blood pressure and have a positive effect on cholesterol. Now you can enjoy the heart loving benefits of chocolate in its most pure raw form when you choose either the raw nibs or raw cacao powder.

This piece was written and compiled for Zebra Organics by Mark D’Aquila, flower essence practitioner, www.essencealchemy.com

Golden Bean Raw Chocolate by High Integrity Foods

High Integrity Foods brings you Golden Bean, a sumptuously raw organic chocolate bar based on the harmonic principles of the golden mean spiral. Years of research and development as a raw food chef led Matt Samuelson into the sacred world of raw cacao. His time and efforts have produced this fine product. Matt only uses the finest raw ingredients for these hand crafted bars.
Chocolate is a noted antioxidant, chocolate contains high amounts of polyphenols and flavonoids both known to assist our health in many ways. Chocolate just may contain the highest concentration of antioxidants in food, with up to 10% antioxidants by weight. Raw chocolate is also a supplies an ample amount of vitamin C and minerals. Most notably magnesium and chromium, two minerals essential for healthy brain function and blood sugar balance.
Raw Agave nectar is the product of the agave desert plant, which secretes a thin sweet, low glycemic nectar. Agave contains more fructose than glucose, which imparts sweetness but nominally effects the bodies blood sugar balance. This combination of sweetness and low-glycemic index make it a perfect compliment to chocolate’s health properties.
The bar is also seasoned with organic raw vanilla bean and himalayan salt which enhances the balance of flavors in the bar. There is also less than 1% of organic non-gmo soy lecithin, this enhances the creamy texture and smoothness of the bar.
This artful bar is bold with chocolate flavor yet smooth on the palate, take a bite and you know why chocolate is known as ‘Food of the Gods’.

Click here to Purchase the Golden Bean Gourmet Raw Chocolate Bar