If there is a product that is commonly used in the beauty industry and recommended for health gains, it is cocoa butter.
However, some people still do not have much information regarding cocoa butter such as the uses, benefits and the side effects.
In this article, we demystify all that you need to know about cocoa butter.
But first, what is cocoa butter?
Cocoa butter which is referred to as theobroma oil is an edible, natural yellow fat that is extracted from cocoa beans.
It is a healthy fat and it contains 57 to 64 percent of saturated fats as opposed to unsaturated fats .
Among the fatty acids that are present in cocoa butter are stearic acid, palmitic acid, myristic acid, arachidic acid and lauric acid.
Cocoa butter is rated as one of the most stable fats known for its velvety texture, emollient properties and pleasant smell .
To make this valuable product, cocoa beans are taken through the fermentation process then roasted.
It is at this point that the butter is separated from the rest of the beans.
To make chocolate, the butter is then pressed to release the chocolate liquor which holds the chocolate smell and taste.
Uses of Cocoa Butter
There are several uses of cocoa butter but what makes it very popular is the fact that it is an active ingredient in most beauty products and it is used to make chocolate.
Another less common use is as a food additive as it can be used to stabilize product’s textures.
Benefits of Cocoa Butter
Over the years, the use of cocoa butter has increased in great numbers because people have discovered the following benefits from it.
- Prevents Skin Peeling And Dryness
Cocoa butter is rich in antioxidants that help improve cognitive function.
It also contains saturated fats that are easily absorbed in the body.
This butter is very helpful for people with sensitive skins because it causes minimal or no irritation whatsoever.
To improve the feel on your skin, you can mix it with essential oil such as argan oil and coconut oil .
- Soothes And Heals Chapped Lips
One of the most popular ways to use cocoa butter is in the commercial beauty industry whereby it is used to make lip balms.
It is also important to note that cocoa butter contain emollient which helps to add a protective layer of hydration to your lips and prevents the lips from condition such as a cold weather and sun heat.
- Fights Signs Of Aging
When taking cocoa butter, you can rest assured that it is a great way of ensuring that you remain youthful.
This is because it is packaged with polyphenols that help to diminish signs of aging and also soothe sensitive skin suffering from dermatitis .
The polyphenols in cocoa butter are very useful as they help to fight degeneration of the skin and cell mutations .
That is not all, the polyphenols also help to improve skin elasticity, promote hydration and ensure better collagen retention.
- Soothes Burns And Rashes
If you have a burn, rub some generous amount of pure cocoa butter on the affected area to help the skin replenish.
Ensure that you do not use artificial cocoa butter as this can aggravate sensitivity of the skin.
Cocoa butter is one of the best natural remedies for rashes.
In the event that you do not have cocoa butter, you can substitute with aloe Vera gel to treat rashes.
- Helps To Treat Mouth Sores
The best thing about pure cocoa butter is that it cannot only help to soothe the skin but also keep the inside of your lips moisturized.
If you have some mouth sores or prone to blisters on the lips, apply some generous amount of cocoa butter and you will be amazed to see the blisters and the painful sores disappear after a short period .
- Make A Shaving Cream
Did you ever know that you could use cocoa butter as a shaving cream?
All you need is to apply some handful before shaving as it helps to prevent nicks and also after shaving as it helps the skin to feel nice and smooth.
After taking a shower, apply some generous amount on your skin as studies suggest that it helps to hydrate the skin and also open up the pores.
- Raises Immunity
Because of the presence of polyphenols, cocoa butter is a great to product to consume if you have issues with your immunity.
The polyphenols contain antioxidants that help to fight DNA damage, inflammation and cell mutations which are the underlying causes of conditions such as fatigue and cardiovascular diseases.
Using coco butter can also help with hormonal imbalance and in promoting brain health –all these help to boost immunity.
- Improves Heart Health
It has been said many times that saturated fats are bad for your health but new research suggest that most plant derived saturated fats are very beneficial to your body as they help to fight cardiovascular diseases.
The presence of polyphenol components in coco butter helps to lower the inflammatory markers that cause atherosclerosis which is the hardening of the arteries .
It is also helpful for lipid metabolism and rated as one of the best foods that you can consume to prevent heart attack.
- Heals Moods Disorders
If you have low levels of serotonin , you are likely to suffer from conditions such as sleeping disorder, depression, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, reduced motivation and aggressive behavior.
The good news is that consumption of cocoa butter can help boost the production of serotonin in your body.
Cocoa butter is packed with antidepressant properties that help boost cognitive activities, boost your moods and combat depression.
Whenever you are feeling down, reach out for edible cocoa butter and you will be amazed with the results.
- Protects From Cancer
As stated above, cocoa butter is enriched with polyphenols that help reduce cancerous cells and tumors in the body.
It is also packed with flavonals and procyanidins that show anti proliferative effects.
It is said that the healing properties of cocoa butter are very important in the treatment of both prostrate and colon cancer .
- Helps Prevent Constipation
One of the most uncomfortable feelings that you can ever have is that of constipation.
However, you can reduce its impact by consuming coco butter.
As much as some people think of it as just a dairy product, cocoa butter releases a natural laxative known as the bile for proper digestion in the digestion tract .
- Makes You Feel Happier
When in anxiety or under stress, do you feel quite relieved and happy after consuming a bar of dark chocolate?
Amazing fact is that cocoa butter is responsible for that feeling.
Cocoa butter enhances the production of serotonin and endorphin in the brain which are responsible for that feeling of happiness .
- Excellent Skin Moisturizer
If you have a dry skin and you are always in need of some lotion to dab on your face, go for pure cocoa butter.
Cocoa butter is rich in antioxidants and helps to lock in moisture and keep your skin hydrated
Another good reason why you should use cocoa butter as a skin moisturizer is the fact that it does not have any adverse effects on your skin as it is free of chemicals, dyes and additives.
To derive the best from cocoa butter, you can opt for cocoa butter lotion which is commonly found in both local and online stores.
- Acts As A Hair Moisturizer
Most people have embraced the use of cocoa butter on their hair because they have discovered the many benefits of cocoa butter to the hair.
Cocoa butter makes the hair look lustrous, moisturized and even adds volume to them.
When preparing DIY hair conditioner, you can use cocoa butter as the main ingredient for best results.
- Used In Aromatherapy
The natural properties of cocoa butter make it one of the vital products to use in aromatherapy.
Aromatherapy is the use of selected fragrances in lotions in an effort to boost mood and promote good health.
For best results, you can blend cocoa butter with Neroli which is a type of oil that reflects floral scents.
Neroli is a great oil to use as it helps to fight depression and anxiety
- Cocoa Butter For Cooking
Cocoa butter is great for cooking savory meals and you can use it in place of other oils such as coconut oil or olive oil.
The best thing about cocoa butter is the fact that it is enriched with components that are beneficial to your body and you do not have to use much of it when cooking.
You can use it in recipes such as preparing fish fillets, cakes and when making desserts
You can get pure cocoa butter in most local and online stores.
- Eczema Protectant
Besides cocoa butter being helpful in skin hydration, use of cocoa butter lotion can help reduce the adverse effects of eczema or dermatitis as people refer it.
Cocoa butter acts as a protectant and discourages itching of the skin.
For best results, you can mix the cocoa butter lotion with other oils such as olive oil, coconut oil and sunflower oil for best results.
Cocoa Butter for Stretch Marks
To talk about cocoa butter and fail to mention its relevance in prevention and treatment of stretch marks would be giving scanty information.
Cocoa butter is one of the most essential products that is used across the world especially during and after pregnancy to help prevent and treat stretch marks .
Multiple studies suggest that cocoa butter is effective in the prevention of stretch butter but to treat them, you will need to incorporate other types of treatments for fast results.
How to Remove Stretch Marks with Cocoa Butter
- Start by cleansing the affected parts of the skin by use of a non-irritating soap and let them dry by use of a clean towel.
- Put a generous amount of cocoa butter on the affected areas and massage onto your skin until all the butter is soaked up in the skin.
- Make it a habit to apply cocoa butter on the affected areas at least two times a day to ensure fast and positive results.
- If pregnant, ensure that you apply cocoa butter on your hips, breasts, stomach and thighs to prevent stretch marks from developing.
- For best results, it is recommended that you continue using cocoa butter even after pregnancy and after the stretch marks have faded away.
The above are some of the benefits that you derive from consuming cocoa butter.
Some people ask if cocoa butter is safe for vegans and it is important to note that indeed it is.
Cocoa butter for vegans is still the same product that non vegans can consume because as weird as it may sound, cocoa butter is vegan .
As much as there are many benefits of consuming cocoa butter, there are a few side effects that you should look out for.
Side Effects of Cocoa Butter
Some of the side effects of using cocoa butter include:
- Allergy And Skin Reactions
If you are prone to skin problems and allergies, you might want to be very careful in the consumption of edible cocoa butter or using cocoa butter as a lotion.
Some of the common skin problems reported include skin irritations, hives, itching and skin rashes.
- Weight Gain
It is therefore advisable that you do not take it in large quantities especially dark chocolates as they can result to obesity and diabetes in severe cases.
- Difficulty In Breathing
According to some studies, consumption of cocoa butter in large quantities can result to difficulties in breathing and cause colic in infants.
They say that as much as a product is essential for your health, consuming it in large quantities can be dangerous for your health.
It is therefore important that you regulate the consumption of cocoa butter if you need to derive many health benefits from this product.
Cocoa Butter versus Shea Butter
One of the common questions that people ask is the difference between cocoa butter and Shea butter in terms of benefits and usage.
Well, it is good to point out that both cocoa butter and Shea butter have almost the same benefits.
However, Shea butter is only used as a skin moisturizer while cocoa butter can be used as a both skin moisturizer and to prepare savory meals.
Warnings Related to Cocoa Butter
- Do not take cocoa butter at least 24 hours before a cardiac stress test as it contains caffeine that may affect the functions of adenosine in the body.
- Taking cocoa butter alongside with birth control pills can cause headaches, fast heartbeat and jitteriness
- Intake of cocoa butter might increase the blood sugar levels. If you are suffering from diabetes, ensure that you consult your doctor before indulging in dark chocolates and other types of edible cocoa butter.
- Cocoa butter contains caffeine that stimulates the body. If suffering from depression, it is not advisable to consume cocoa butter alongside medications used to cure depression as this can result to side effects such as fast heartbeat, increased blood pressure and nervousness.
Palmers Cocoa Butter
This is one of the most popular cocoa butter brands across the world.
Palmer’s cocoa butter is made from fatty extracts of cocoa beans and it is rich in vitamin E and antioxidants that are very helpful to your body.
One of the reason why this brand is quite popular is the fact that it really helps in prevention of stretch marks, helps to hydrate skin and heal scars. .
You can buy palmers cocoa butter in various forms such as lotion, skin therapy oil and palmer’s cocoa butter stick.
Other Popular Brands of Cocoa Butter
- 100% organic cacao butter 16oz by Tisano
- Healthworks cacao butter raw organic.
- Organic golden cacao butter.
- Navitas Organic raw cocoa butter.
- Cococare 100% cocoa butter stick.
- Aura Cacia Organic cocoa butter.
- Ecuadorian truly raw cocoa butter.
From the above discovery, it is clear that cocoa butter is an essential product that you should consume and use because you can derive many health benefits from it.
However, it is important to use it sparingly to avoid the side effects as listed above.
To ensure that you are buying pure cocoa butter, it is important that you go through the ingredients list before you make an order.
You can find pure cocoa butter in both local and online stores so whatever that suits you, go for it and replenish your skin and derive the many benefits of this product.