Cocoa flavanols fuel heart and brain function

| By Alan Frost, Founder and President of FlavaNaturals

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Cocoa Flavanols Fuel Heart and Brain Function

As an Intelligent Medicine listener/subscriber, you’re already well aware of the health benefits of cocoa flavanols. But even popular dark chocolate brands may not deliver; it’s all about bean selection and proper processing. Flava Naturals delivers 5-9 times the flavanols of an average dark chocolate bar. Learn about the science behind this remarkable functional food here . . .

—Dr. Ronald Hoffman

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FlavaNaturals performance chocolate products uniquely deliver the flavanol levels proven effective in controlled studies

Flavanol Benefits Backed by Science

The evidence is compelling! Cocoa flavanols have been researched at top academic institutions, including Harvard and Columbia, and are shown to support heart health, brain function, and blood sugar in dozens of controlled studies.

In fact, a new, groundbreaking Harvard Study Revealed a 27% Reduction in Cardiovascular Death in a 21,000 person, 5-year controlled study of people consuming cocoa flavanols (500mg). This benefit jumped to 39% among participants taking their cocoa flavanol pills daily as directed by the study. The researchers also found a meaningful reduction in major cardiovascular events including heart attacks and strokes.

Another highly touted study from Columbia University Showed a Two-Decade Improvement in the Speed to Memory Recall with daily consumption of a high-flavanol (900mg) cocoa drink. Lead investigator, Dr. Scott Small of Columbia University, noted that, “If a participant had the memory of a typical 60-year-old at the beginning of the study, after three months of consuming 900mg of cocoa flavanols daily, that person, on average, had the memory recall speed of a typical 30- or 40-year-old.”

Cocoa Flavanols, not Cacao%

Ask someone why dark chocolate is good for you, or how their favorite chocolate or cocoa powder stack up against other brands, and you’re likely to hear something like, “The higher the cacao percentage, the healthier. It turns out, however, that most benefits of dark chocolate can be attributed to cocoa flavanols and that cacao % (the portion of your chocolate coming from a cocoa bean) is only the third most important determinant of flavanol levels.

The most important determinant of flavanol levels in chocolate and cocoa powder is bean selection. Flavanol levels in cocoa beans vary considerably depending on bean type, soil, climate, and farming practices. In fact, two beans from different farms can vary in flavanol content by a factor of 10!

Processing methods are the second most important driver of cocoa flavanol levels as high heat and chemicals destroy flavanols. Unfortunately, conventional chocolate processing, which uses alkalization (a chemical process) and high roasting temperatures, removes much of what is naturally good in chocolate and cocoa powder.

How many Flavanols? How Often?

So what does this mean in terms of portions? Cocoa flavanol levels consumed in studies that demonstrate a positive impact on brain and heart health generally range between 500mg and 1,000mg daily. Research also shows that flavanol benefits build with daily use.

A typical dark chocolate bar, however, contains only 100mg of cocoa flavanols. And a typical serving of cocoa powder contains only 150mg. That means you would need to consume at least 5 average dark chocolate bars per day to achieve the levels used in successful studies!

FlavaNaturals Chocolate Products Contain the Flavanol Levels Proven to Benefit Heart and Brain Function (and tasty!)

FlavaNaturals performance chocolate products deliver 500-900mg of cocoa flavanols, with calorie counts as low as 35 per serving. That’s 5 to 9 times the cocoa flavanols of an average dark chocolate bar! The secret is starting with some of the highest flavanol cocoa beans in the world, and processing them naturally and at lower temperatures to preserve the flavanols.

FlavaNaturals dark chocolate, unsweetened cocoa powder, mocha cold brew, and chocolate oatmilk are available at and


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