Top positive review
432 people found this helpful
Really good but...
on October 14, 2011
I was inspired to go out and buy this bar by research released by Harvard this past march about the health benefits of flavanoids in cocoa. I just went out and picked up the bar with the highest cocoa content assuming I'd be getting a the highest dose of flavanols (the class of flavanoid that is found in cocoa)... after a little more research though, I realized I'd picked the wrong brand for that. Looking at the ingredients, you'll see that the cocoa is "processed with alkali" (aka Dutch processed chocolate). Apparently, 60-90% of flavanoids are removed during Dutch processing (according to wikipedia). From what I read, you're much better off trying trying to find "natural" chocolate if you are going for the health benefits.
On the other hand... I'm totally addicted to this chocolate! At first I found it too bitter and ate it along with some grapes to help sweeten it up, but after a few nights my palate has changed and am loving it just the way it is. Too bad about the Dutch processing.
If you are going for the healthiest brand regardless of price, it looks like the Xocai brand is the way to go. Not only is it natural, but it's cold pressed (heating the chocolate also removes flavinoids) and is sweetened with açai berries. I couldn't find any data on how big of a difference in flavanoid content of cold pressed and non-cold pressed chocolate, but I doubt it's worth the current cost.
There's a few good dark chocolates available here at amazon that are natural and dairy free with high cocoa content including: Dragoba makes an 87% cocoa organic chocolate bar, and Endangered Species makes one at 88% (Black Panther Extreme Dark Chocolate). Stay away from bars that don't post their ingredients on Amazon (such as Green & Black's organic 85% cocoa dark chocolate bar which contains whole milk).