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Agricultural Reviews
Year : 2019, Volume : 40, Issue : 2
First page : ( 143) Last page : ( 149)
Print ISSN : 0253-1496. Online ISSN : 0976-0741.
Article DOI : 10.18805/ag.R-1851

Health Benefits of Bioactive Compounds from Cocoa (Theobroma cacao)

Shahanas E1,*, Panjikkaran Seeja T1, Aneena ER1, Sharon CL1, Remya PR1

1Department of Community Science, College of Horticulture, Kerala Agricultural University, Vellanikkara, Kerala, India

*Corresponding Author: Shahanas E, Department of Community Science, College of Horticulture, Kerala Agricultural University, Vellanikkara, Kerala, India, Phone: 9496520288, E-mail: shahanasjam@gmail.com

Online published on 17 August, 2019.

Abstract

Cocoa is regarded as a super food due to its high nutrient content and proven health benefits. Cocoa beans are rich in carbohydrate (31%), protein (11%), fat (54%), fiber (16%) and minerals. Cocoa is a good source of bioactive compounds too. The major bioactive components are polyphenols constituted of flavonoids and non-flavonoids. The bioactive components with rich antioxidants and anti-inflammatory activities contribute to various health benefits. The flavonoid-rich chocolates improve peripheral vascular function. The consumption of cocoa or chocolate is beneficial in inhibiting the complex molecular process leading to cancer. Flavonoids in cocoa increase insulin sensitivity by improving endothelial function and reducing oxidative stress. The cocoa flavonoids also penetrate and accumulate in the brain regions involved in learning and memory. The knowledge of bioactive compounds in cocoa and cocoa products suggests that they could be consumed as a part of wholesome, health-promoting nutritional food.

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Keywords

Bioactive compounds, Cocoa, Flavonoids, Health benefits, Non-flavonoids, Polyphenols.

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