Cacao: Great for your skin and delicious as well

Chocolate isn't just delicious, it's also very good for your skin.

Theobroma cacao (or “food of the gods” – we couldn’t agree more!) is a plant native to the Amazon, which has been in existence for thousands of years.

We admit it, we’re addicted! Chocolate melts beautifully both in the mouth and on the skin.

 

 

Omega-3 and Photo-aging

There are ever more studies that point to the benefits of chocolate, including one published in the International Journal of Pharmaceutics which indicates that topical omega-3s can reduce UV sensitivity (signs of photoaging) in skin cells (1). Research suggests that there’s a possibility that skin care products rich in omega-3 or omega-6 fatty acids may actually improve the skin’s appearance (2).

Cacao is the ingredient per excellence in all chocolate products, and a very complex foodstuff nutritionally rich in minerals, antioxidants and vasoactive compounds.

Hippocrates, the famous Greek physician who’s considered the father of medicine, said:

“Let food be thy medicine, and let medicine be thy food.”

The idea that chocolate can serve quite literally as “medicine” has already been taken up in scientific literature (3).

Cocoa butter, the natural oil derived from cacao beans, contains omega-3 fatty acids which provide the skin with a healthy dose of soothing rejuvenation, as well as antioxidant effects (2). And there’s a great deal of evidence pointing to the health benefits of regularly eating dark chocolate.

 

Acne and Chocolate

 It’s nothing more than a myth that chocolate causes acne. However, while it doesn’t cause acne, chocolate is still full of high-calorie, high-fat ingredients. These days, there’s more attention being paid to the link between diet and developing acne.

Acne is a complex skin problem and breakouts can come and go for no real reason. But there’s strong evidence which connects acne with a Western diet, rich in calories, fats, and refined carbohydrates. Fast food – like hamburgers, fried chicken, hot dogs, french fries, and soft drinks – can increase the risk of acne. The high sugar and fat content can boost sebum production, a determining factor in the development of acne.

So, if “blaming chocolate” is more or less a fabrication, where did it come from?

Food is far from the most likely culprit when it comes to acne. The real causes of acne are the accumulation of dead skin cells inside your pores and the skin’s overproduction of oil (sebum), combined with excess bacteria.

Hormones also play an important role in acne breakouts. That's why acne is so common during puberty and at that time of the month for people who menstruate, meaning your chocolate consumption ends up coinciding with your breakout! Predisposition to acne is also hereditary. So, if your parents had acne, you'll probably have it too.

At Per Purr we have Fresh Soap, a refreshing soap ideal for all skin types, made with plenty of cocoa butter mixed with chopped mint leaves and three essential oils: peppermint, lemongrass and basil.

The bottom line? Cheer up and eat your chocolate bars…in moderation!

 

 

Studies:

¨1¨ https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/15979259/

¨2¨ https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4696435/

¨3¨. Franco OH. Bonneux L. de Laet C. Peeters A. Steyerberg EW. Mackenbach JP. The Polymeal: a more natural, safer, and probably tastier (than the Polypill) strategy to reduce cardiovascular disease by more than 75% BMJ. 2004;329:1447–1450. [PMC free article] [PubMed] [Google Scholar]

 

Matcha, “the king of teas” is a high-quality Japanese tea. It was discovered over 800 years ago by Buddhist monks and is used in Japanese tea ceremonies to this day. It is made with the plant’s youngest, most tender leaves.
The food industry is becoming more and more familiar with Matcha – the ideal ingredient to prepare green-tea flavored dishes. A lot of bakeries, chocolate shops, ice cream shops and renowned chefs include green tea flavored desserts among their offerings. They also make Matcha lattes and smoothies.

Photo: Recipe with Matcha Tea


The leaves are ground with artisanal stone grinders in order to produce a very fine, bright green powder.
Today we would like to talk about Matcha tea, because besides loving the amazing pure tea flavor and its culinary use (which is not for everyone), it has numerous benefits for your health and your skin.

Photo: Recipe with Matcha Tea


Matcha has both a stimulating effect from the caffeine and a calming effect, due to the L-theanine. Your body absorbs the tea, along with its amino acids, antioxidants (approximately 5 times more than Goji berries), vitamins A and C, as well as calcium, potassium and iron in much larger quantities than roasted green tea.
Here are two recipes: one to drink and another for a topical skin treatment.

Photo: Recipe with Matcha Tea


MATCHA LATTE
– Sugar, honey or agave.
– 1/2 teaspoon of Matcha
– 50 ml boiling water
– 300 ml stirred milk (could be soy, oat or almond if you don’t drink cow’s milk)
Dilute the Matcha powder in hot water, stir well until it dissolves completely and a layer of foam appears. Add hot milk and continue stirring. Sweeten to taste. It’s delicious and a great way to start your day. It’s a perfect substitute for coffee; it contains 5 times as much caffeine.
 
MATCHA FACE MASK
– 1 tablespoon of Matcha powder
– 2 tablespoons of mineral water
Mix the water and Matcha together to form a consistent paste. Apply to your face for 30 minutes. It will leave your skin feeling incredible!
 
Here in Spain, Matcha can be found in health food stores and some cafes such as Le Pain Quotidien and even Starbucks. If you want to try green tea sorbet, you can find it at Asian restaurants. In Japan, they even have Matcha flavored chocolate!
Who ever said green tea isn’t a treat?

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