Mood is something that tends to fluctuate for women — a tad. For centuries women have gotten a bad rap for mood swings. I am not about to say that chocolate is the answer, but I would definitely suggest that when you crave chocolate on a bad day, whether it be a terrible haircut or your prince turned into a frog, your body might be onto something.
Raw cacao actually raises the level of serotonin in the brain, which acts as an anti-depressant, stimulates the secretion of endorphins, which of course make us feel great, and releases phenylethylamine in the brain, which happens to be the same chemical compound that is released when we are in love. Basically, chocolate is a mood elevator, anti-depressant and your possible answer to a bad day.
There is another reason why women love chocolate and crave its dark yummy goodness — magnesium. Raw cacao contains a wide variety of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. However, magnesium in particular can make a world of difference for a woman. If you wonder why you might crave chocolate during menstruation, it’s because cacao is a fantastic source of magnesium which women are often depleted of during their menstrual cycle.
A deficiency in magnesium can cause indigestion, flatulence, abdominal pain, constipation, and yes ladies — even cramps. On top of those minor symptoms, magnesium has also been implicated in other conditions including depression, heart disease, diabetes, migraines, insomnia, PMS and even menopausal symptoms.
It's a tasty way to get what you need
Although supplements can be great if you are depleted, magnesium is easy to find in a diet that contains dark leafy greens, grains, sea vegetables and raw cacao. At home, I sneak raw cacao into lots of things such as oatmeal, amaranth or my chocolate smoothie.
I blend up many versions of raw cacao smoothies, but here is my basic recipe. Feel free to get creative and add fruits and other super foods. I made it with leafy greens for a friend and didn’t tell her that she had consumed her serving of greens for the day until she finished it. She had no idea that greens could taste like chocolate! I’ll have to figure out a way to make a smoothie for my grandmother, hiding the chocolate instead of the greens. She is the only woman I know that doesn’t like chocolate. As for the other 99.9 percent of women who do love chocolate, enjoy!
Raw cacao smoothie
1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
1 tablespoon raw cacao powder
1 tablespoon raw cacao nibs
1 tablespoon raw maca powder or mesquite powder (or both)
Your body is an extraordinary machine that is smarter than you might realize. The next time you are tempted by a candy bar, think twice about what your body is actually telling you. Listen to your cravings and satisfy them with whole, real foods such as raw cacao.