Cocoa butter is recognized for its outstanding cosmetic benefits. However, there are plenty of other reasons why they should be part of every woman beauty kit, but also from the ingredients commonly used in the kitchen.
Today will see together the cocoa butter health benefits and not only.
Where Does The Cocoa Butter Come From And How?
Cocoa butter is also called theobroma oil and also known as ‘the food of the Gods’ and ‘extreme moisturizer’.
The cocoa tree, the grain of which the butter is obtained, bears the scientific name of Theobroma cacao and grows in tropical forests in South America.
If you’ve ever wondered what pure cocoa butter is made of, the answer is straightforward: from the cocoa beans of the tree of the same name.
To obtain the butter the cocoa beans are cleaned, allow them to ferment (in banana leaves), then ripen, the peels removed, and then they are pressed and grazed.
After they are minced, the results is a cocoa mass that resembles a cocoa liquor and contains 54-58% butter. This liqueur becomes solid at room temperature and has the appearance of black chocolate but with a much stronger smell.
This cocoa mass is pressed, thus separating the cocoa butter and the powder.
Cocoa Butter – What Does It Contain?
The cocoa tree is one of those plants that are little known but produce extraordinary fruits. Cocoa butter is a type of natural vegetable fat with a high saturated fat content.
It contains 34.5% oleic acid (omega 9), 34.5% stearic acid, 26% palmitic acid, 3.2% linoleic acid (omega 6), 1% arachidonic acid, 0.3% palmitoleic acid, of which 0.5% is also made up of fatty acids.
Also, cocoa butter contains tryptophan and antioxidants (polyphenols, flavonoids), but also calcium, magnesium, zinc, potassium, vitamins E and vitamin K and a caffeine-like compound.
Consumption stimulates the production of phenylethylamine and dopamine, both responsible for a state of mild euphoria and dreaming.
Therefore, whenever you consume a small piece of black chocolate, your mood improves.
How Many Types Of Cocoa Butter Are There?
Cocoa butter is of two types – refined and unrefined. The difference between them is that in the case of the refined one, other substances are used in the production process.
Refined cocoa butter is processed. Refining removes impurities, strong flavors, but also the color or smell.
The refining of butter is generally done using chemical solvents, and the process takes place at high temperatures so some good substances can be lost.
There are, however, natural refining methods, with gentler substances, which better preserve the natural properties in which cocoa butter is rich. You can find information on the refining process on the butter label.
In the case of unrefined cocoa butter, we talk about the product obtained after a first pressing.
It is the one in whose production the least has intervened and is the healthiest one. It is solid, but it becomes malleable if it is kept warm.
It has a stronger cocoa flavor and, if you want to use it in cooking, is the best option.
Cocoa Butter Characteristics
The characteristics of the fat in cocoa butter, which are in fact due to its superpowers, are:
– the melting point at a temperature comprised between 34 and 38 degrees Celsius
– white-yellowish color
– creamy, velvety texture
– taste and smell of cocoa (chocolate)
– a very long shelf life ranging from 2 to 5 years
– three times more antioxidants (including phenols) than red wine, the drink recognized for this property.
Cocoa Butter Benefits
Cocoa butter is edible, used to prepare many raw vegan desserts and not only because it has extensive use in cosmetics, especially home-made and self-made, in simple creams that are quickly prepared from one to two ingredients.
You can use it in the kitchen, in stores you will find edible cocoa butter, edible, which will help you make delicious and healthy desserts.
Here are some benefits that you’ll enjoy if you use it as an ingredient in cakes:
– It has a high content of good fatty acids (omega 9 and omega 6), brain aid and cardiovascular system
– the polyphenols it contains help relieve the symptoms of asthma
– It is a natural antidepressant, helping to produce the hormone of happiness – serotonin.
Cocoa butter is found in many cosmetic products because it has plenty of skin benefits, results of simple treatments, many of which can equate costly cosmetic treatments at a cosmetic salon.
– stimulates the production of collagen, which leads to wrinkle blurring and their prevention
– hydrates the skin very well and gives it a velvety texture
– helps to treat and diminish scars
– soothes irritations and helps treat diseases such as eczema or dermatitis
– it is good for getting a uniform bronze, much sought after by women, increasingly aware that prolonged exposure to the sun is dangerous
– prevents and fades stretch marks, being of great help to women during pregnancy to combat their appearance, especially because it is a natural product
– fight the adverse effects of sun and wind on the skin on the face, arms or the rest of the body.
– prevents drying of the skin that nourishes it healthy and gives it a shiny appearance.
Not only the skin can be pampered with cocoa butter but also hair. Cocoa butter helps restore hair structure, moisturizes the scalp and spikes, helping to repair splinters and spikes.
At the same time, cocoa butter:
– nourishes your hair and makes it more resistant to environmental hazards
– It helps make hair easier and makes it easier to comb and hair.
– strengthens the hair and prevents it from breaking
– gives hair volume
– nourishes the scalp and prevents its drying, making it an effective remedy against dandruff
Be Careful What You Buy
Pure cocoa butter is obviously the one that offers the most visible benefits.
The disadvantage is that it is much more difficult to find and is more expensive than the blends of cocoa butter and other oils.
That’s why even manufacturers have begun to replace it with more refined oils more accessible as soybean, palm, coconut or Shea butter.
How can you tell the difference? Read the labels and check the color – pure cocoa butter has a lighter shade than commercial, described by a brighter yellow.
Because it has a very stable composition, cocoa butter lasts for over two years.
Some use a jar of cocoa butter for 5 years.
When you want to buy high-quality cocoa butter products, try to avoid those white lotions that are sold in jars.
These products may contain cocoa butter but are not pure and most likely contain many additives to preserve that texture and color that you like.
Cocoa butter has an amount of antioxidants three times higher than in red wine, and the phenols it contains have the effect of reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease.
Just to mention some benefits:
– Prevents drying and peeling of the skin
– Heals the cracked lips
– Fight against signs of aging
– It relieves burns, irritation, and infections
– Helps treat pain in the mouth
– Improves the health of the heart
– Increases immunity