“HIIT” It up! 5 Cardio Secrets That Reduce Fat Fast!

NOTE: This is Part 1 of a 2-Part Series.

We all know that cardio can help you reduce body fat. But what kind of cardio works the fastest? How can you avoid throwing away lean muscle with the fat? What supplements should you use to get maximum results? In this two-part series, we’ll reveal the answers to these questions and more.

Secret #1: “HIIT” it up!

What is HIIT?

High-intensity interval training (HIIT) (pronounced “hit”) sounds technical, but it doesn’t have to be. If you add HIIT to your workout program, it can help you reduce body fat faster and hold on to more lean muscle than regular cardio.

Simply stated, HIIT involves 3 steps:

(1)  Briefly perform exercise at a high intensity.

(2)  Briefly exercise at a low intensity or rest.

(3)  Repeat several times.

The term “interval” is used because periods of high-intensity exercise are separated by intervals of low-intensity exercise or rest. The latter is sometimes called the “recovery” period.

Think of how little kids sometimes play. They dart across the grass at full speed. Then they slow down to a walk. Then they dart off again in another direction. And so on. They’re doing HIIT, and they don’t even realize it!

The rules of HIIT are pretty flexible. The high-intensity period may last anywhere from 15 to 60 seconds. The recovery period may last the same amount of time.

HIIT vs. CME

The opposite of HIIT is sometimes called “continuous moderate exercise” (CME), or “low intensity steady state” (LISS). If you walk for an hour at a steady pace on the treadmill, for instance, you are doing CME. Some doctors still prescribe CME for fat reduction. However, an increasing number are now telling their patients to “HIIT it up” instead. Why?

  • Clinical studies provide      compelling evidence that you can reduce body fat faster with HIIT than you      can with CME. This is true even when you burn more calories during CME. In      one study, subjects who performed CME for several weeks didn’t lose any      fat, whereas those who performed HIIT did. This occurred despite the fact      that those who performed CME burned 15,000 more calories than subjects in      the HIIT group.
  • Patient compliance may be higher      with HIIT, possibly because it isn’t as boring as CME.
  • The number-one excuse often made      for not exercising enough is “I don’t have time.” HIIT workouts      are much shorter than CME workouts. No more excuses!
  • HIIT is associated with improved      cardiovascular and metabolic function in people who are currently healthy      as well as “at risk” patients.
  • HIIT reduces both subcutaneous      (“under the skin”) and visceral fat. Subcutaneous fat is the fat      that you can see on your body. Visceral fat is stored deep inside your      body, around organs. It has been linked to diseases such as diabetes.
  • Because your muscles have to work      harder during HIIT, it can do a better job of preserving lean muscle than      CME. Too much CME can cause lean muscle to shrink (atrophy).

“How can HIIT help me lose fat faster, even if I burn more calories during CME?”

Good question. Scientists are still trying to figure this out. Several factors may be involved. For instance, HIIT workouts may boost your metabolism in the hours or days that follow. Also, there is some evidence that HIIT may suppress appetite.

HIIT isn’t a miracle maker. Keep in mind that the HIIT protocols used in clinical studies have often been pretty exhausting, more intense than you would likely do yourself. Also, individual results can vary, as is the case for any form of exercise.

Secret #2: Record it!

Whether it’s HIIT or regular cardio, if you want to reduce body fat as quickly as possible, then you need to record your workout accomplishments. Doing so will help you ensure that they are progressive, i.e., your body is challenged to work harder during each workout.

Make it easy for yourself! Duration and calories expended are two of the simplest things to record, and most modern cardio equipment displays both of them. During your next workout, try to burn more calories in the same amount of time. Or, try to burn the same amount of calories in less time. Record your accomplishments and try to beat them at the workout that follows.

Secret #3: Keep it fresh!

It happens to the best of us: We start using a piece of cardio equipment, we become comfortable with it, and then we continue to use it, over and over and over again.

Keep it fresh! Change your choice of cardio weekly, if not more often. This will make your workouts more fresh, fun and challenging. Changing things up may also help you avoid repetitive strain injuries.

A well-equipped gym should have multiple pieces of cardio equipment to choose from: treadmill, elliptical, stationary bike, Stairclimber, Stepmill, Jacob’s Ladder, etc. Use them all. Don’t limit yourself.

Secret #4: Try these sample workouts!

There are a ton of HIIT workouts on the Web. Below is just a small collection that you can use to get started.

  • Stationary cycle: You can use this      basic HIIT workout on a regular cycle or a spinning cycle.
    • Warm-up: 5       minutes at low intensity.
    • High-intensity       spinning: 1 minute.
    • Low-intensity       spinning: 1 minute.
    • Repeat 8 times.
    • Cool-down: 5       minutes with gradually decreasing intensity.
  • Stepmill workout #1:
    • Level 5: 2       minutes.
    • Level 12: 2       minutes.
    • Repeat 8 times.
  • Stepmill workout #2: This HIIT      workout comes from a female fitness competitor and cover model:
    • Level 8: 3       minutes.
    • Level 10: 1       minute.
    • Level 12: 1       minute.
    • Level 16: 1       minute (or as long as you can).
    • Go back to       Level 8 and repeat. Beginners can skip Level 16.
  • Jacob’s Ladder: Two HIIT workouts      are available at this link:

http://jacobsladderexercise.com/cardio-training/#sthash.kPtS2gSd.dpbs

Secret #5: Don’t overdo it.
HIIT is intense. Start by doing it once a week. Increase it to twice a week as your stamina improves, and depending on your goals, up to three times a week. If you are doing both your weight workout and cardio in the same session, do weights first. If you find it difficult to recover, try doing cardio and weights on separate days. This may allow for better recovery and help you retain more lean muscle as you drop body fat.
Bonus Secret! #6: Ain’t no half steppin!

When you do cardio, use the full range of motion, just as you would when lifting weights. Or, as Big Daddy Kane rapped, “Ain’t no half steppin.”

It’s been said that partial reps build a partial muscle. It’s true. This becomes especially apparent when you resume using the full range of motion in your weight room exercises after a period of using partial reps. Within a matter of days, your muscles will appear fuller and more defined throughout their entire length. To the untrained eye (your grandmother, say), the difference may not be noticeable. To the experienced bodybuilder, however, it is like night and day.

The same rule applies to cardio. When you do “mini steps” on the Stairclimber, Stepmill or elliptical machine, for instance, it may feel easier, but you’re only cheating yourself. Using a longer, deeper step or stride will improve the appearance and performance of your muscles.

In the next issue…Part 2:  Supplements that can help you reduce fat faster with cardio! In the final part of this 2-part series, we’ll reveal which supplements you can use to maximize your fat-loss results with HIIT cardio!

Myth-Melting Study Finds Chocolate Burns Belly Fat, Improves Cholesterol

healthy chocolate

A new study published in the European Review for Medical and Pharmacological Sciences has revealed something quite counterintuitive about chocolate, one of the world’s most prized ‘high-fat’ foods.  This strangely medicinal ‘sweet treat,’ which ironically you find in the candy aisle at the pharmacy, improved markers of cardiovascular disease, including the reduction of belly fat, and only after one week of consumption.

Researchers from the Department of Neuroscience, Division of Human Nutrition, University of Tor Vergata, Rome, in a paper titled ‘Effects of dark chocolate in a population of Normal Weight Obese women: a pilot study,’ describe the effects of 100 gram of dark chocolate taken for one week (approximately a 3 ounce bar) in so-called ‘normal weight obese (NWO)’ syndrome subjects.

NWO syndrome is defined as ‘an excessive body fat associated with a normal body mass index and characterized by a higher risk for cardiovascular morbidity and mortality,’ and has been found to be associated with a 2.2 fold increased risk of cardiovascular mortality in women compared with those with low body fat.  Generally, those with NWO have 30% or more total body fat mass percentage and significantly higher values of proinflammatory cytokines such as IL-1, IL-6, IL-8 and TNF-α.

The study looked at the effects of dark chocolate consumption on the following:

  •   Blood lipid profiles
  •   Biochemical parameters (e.g. interleukins)
  •   Blood pressure
  •   Abdominal circumference (i.e. ‘belly fat’)

A modest sample size of 15 women with NWO syndrome, aged 20-40 years, were included in the study. They received 100 grams of dark chocolate (DC) containing 70% cocoa for 7-days. Dual energy-X-ray absorptiometry (DXA) was used to measure body composition. Blood pressure, anthropometric measurements, biochemical parameters and plasma levels of some cytokines were measured before and after DC consumption.

The results were described as follows:

After DC [dark chocolate] consumption, we observed a significant increase in the HDL cholesterol level, a significant decrease of total cholesterol/HDL cholesterol ratio, LDL/HDL cholesterol ratio, and interleukin-1 receptor antagonist (IL-1Ra). In addition, a reduction in abdomen circumference was observed. We also found a positive correlation between changes in atherogenic indices, and IL-1Ra, abdomen reduction.

The authors concluded:

Our findings suggest that regular consumption of DC could be useful in maintaining a good atherogenic profile, due to the favorable effects on HDL cholesterol, lipoprotein ratios and inflammation markers.

This study should debunk several myths regarding chocolate consumption, such as ‘it makes you fat,’ ‘it clogs your arteries,’ or ‘it is bad for blood sugar.’ While low-cocoa chocolate, which is often high in sugar and may contain cow’s milk products, preservatives and lower quality fats, may not translate into the benefits observed in this study, a high-quality, high-cocoa chocolate may go quite a long way in enhancing general health and well-being. This is especially so if one chooses organically-produced, fair-trade and preferably raw chocolate. The raw part is especially important as the potent antioxidant compounds in cocoa are found at much higher and physiologically relevant concentrations in the non-heated and unprocessed forms.  Indeed, according to the authors of this study, “[the] health properties of cocoa consumption were mainly related [in previous research] to the antioxidant properties of polyphenolic compounds, among others monomeric flavanols, epicatechin, catechin and oligomeric, procyanidins.”

The specific sample of dark chocolate used in this study was assayed to contain the following compounds:

It is believed that one of the primary lipid-modulating, and HDL-raising compounds in high-quality chocolate is the saturated stearic acid found in the cocoa butter. This is also a counterintuitive finding since many decades of propaganda has convinced the mainstream that ‘saturated’ fats are bad and ‘unsaturated’ fats are good.  As the researchers state:

Because of its high saturated fat content, chocolate is often postulated to have a hypercholesterolemic effect. However, the high content of stearic acid (~30% of fatty acids) is considered to be neutral with respect to total and LDL cholesterol, and positive on serum concentration of HDL.”

It is truly remarkable that the dark chocolate was capable of raising the so-called ‘good’ HDL cholesterol 10% within only 7 days. This is a feat pharmaceutical lipid-modulating drugs can not accomplish, unless we are talking about patented forms of niacin (Niaspan) or fish oil (Lovaza), which really don’t count since they are really just glorified dietary supplements.

Previously, we looked at how chocolate – believe it or not – could replace the need for the $29 billion dollar plus cholesterol-lowering statin drug industry, by addressing and remedying the underlying pathology of the blood vessels (endothelial dysfunction) that leads to atherosclerosis and eventual cardiac morbidity and mortality. We feel the research, if you would like to peruse it, is remarkably compelling: Chocolate Gives Statins A $29 Billion Run For Their Money.

When it is all said and done, chocolate should not be viewed simply as a natural “medicine,’ to suppress bodily symptoms or clinical parameters, as anyone who ‘loves’ the way it makes them feel can plainly tell. As my friend Marc David pointed out in his recent article on Vitamin P[leasure], the experience of joy within the enjoyment of chocolate is itself a highly medicinal ‘nutritional fact’ that will never make it onto the label of a product, nor will be easily (if ever) comprehended through clinical trials.  Let the research support what most of us already know: food can be medicine, yes, but the point is to use it in moderate, culinary doses so that mega-dose, heroic ‘medicine’ will never become necessary.

Raw, organic unprocessed dark chocolate is available at www.AllHealthyChocolate.com

 


Cacao: Nature’s Supreme Antioxidant Source – Can chocolate truly be healthy?

Healthy Chocolate

Can chocolate truly be healthy?

YES! Let’s explain why:

Everyone has heard of free radicals. It’s well known that these rogue molecules damage healthy cells, which in turn results in unhealthy tissues, organs and eventually, an unhealthy body.

Fortunately, cacao, the nutritional source of healthy chocolate, is nature’s top source of antioxidants. Antioxidants are nutrients that neutralize free radicals and slow their damage.

“…among the most important observations in the history of medicine…How important does that make [cacao antioxidants]? I would say very important.”

Harvard physician and researcher Norman Hollenberg, MD, regarding the benefits of cacao’s antioxidants.

Among cacao’s most impressive phytonutrients are several types of polyphenols, largely recognized as some of the most powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory compounds known today. The most powerful and prominent polyphenols in cacao are flavanols.

Hundreds of studies have found that flavanols possess distinct and powerful properties, including the ability to:

  • Minimize inflammation throughout the body
  • Slow free radicals
  • Protect the heart and blood vessels
  • Support the immune system
  • Promote antibacterial/antiviral activity in the body
  • Relax and dilate blood vessels
  • Modify blood sugar levels
  • Protect the brain
  • Preserve cellular integrity
  • Protect and repair the liver
  • Positively modify hormone activity
  • and much more!

 


Whey Protein Cuts Appetite

cellucor-cor-whey-flavors

 

Whey protein supplements promote satiety (feeling of fullness) and prevent overeating.  The body tries to maintain a constant weight that scientists call the weight “set point.”  Go on a diet and lose 20 pounds and the weight set point control mechanisms increase hunger and slow metabolism.  High-protein meals help people lose weight because they prevent hunger.  One reason may be that the amino acids that make up proteins are converted to blood sugar in the liver, which maintains a steady flow of nutrients to the brain.  A study from the University of California, Davis showed that whey protein increases the secretion of appetite-controlling hormones such as cholecystokinin.  The main controlling center for the weight set point is in the hypothalamus, located in the lower part of the brain.  Metabolic hormones such as insulin, glucagon and growth hormone; environmental temperature, fat cell hormones such as leptin and gut hormones such as cholecystokinin, peptide YY and ghrelin influence it.  These chemicals and brain centers are part of a sophisticated system that regulates hunger, satiety (fullness), energy absorption, food transit time in the gut and metabolic rate.  Cholecystokinin, released while eating whey protein, promotes satiety and prevents overeating.  (Physiology & Behavior, in press; published online October 2007)

 


Power Up!

ultra 40

Can’t figure out why you’re always dragging?  Lack of iron may be to blame – even if you’re not anemic.  When fatigued women with normal blood levels took iron supplements for 12 weeks, they reported feeling 50 percent less tired, according to a new study published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal.  It’s possible that they had enough of the mineral in their bloodstream but inadequate amounts stored in their brain, muscles, and other tissues, probably because of blood loss during menstruation, says lead study author Paul Vaucher, a Ph.D. student at the University of Geneva in Switzerland.  Participants took 80 milligrams each day, which is much more than the recommended daily value of the 18 mg contained in many multivitamins.  However, don’t self-treat with larger doses without talking to your doctor first, as too much iron can be dangerous.  And keep in mind that a pill isn’t the only answer:  Beef, seafood, and poultry are also great sources of iron.


Miracle Food of the Month: Spinach

spinach

 

It’s a miracle people still make salads with iceberg lettuce!  A member of the brassica family, spinach is an exceptionally nutritious food.  These leafy greens are packed with antioxidants such as beta-carotene, carotenoids, lutein and zeaxanthin.  Besides fighting off cancer, spinach is a great source of folate (containing nearly 25 percent of your daily requirement).  It also wards off eye disease and age-related macular degeneration (AMD).  If the texture of spinach turns you off, pick up a bag of baby spinach – you’ll never buy lettuce again.


Sports Nutrition for Beginners

If you are new to training and exercise, you undoubtedly have may questions.  Where do I start?  How do I train?  What supplements should I be taking?  How long will it take to reach my goals?  As you’ll learn along the way, the answers to these and other questions ultimately lie within.  Each athlete is unique, and therefore has completely unique likes, dislikes, needs, and potential.  What works for your training partner may have little effect on you, and vice versa.  Physical fitness is more than merely a pastime – it is a way of life that requires knowledge, discipline, and desire.

Set Goals for Success

Setting realistic goals is an effective way to stay consistent throughout training, while learning how your body responds to different types of training.  When setting goals, remember that nothing happens overnight.  The body responds gradually to physical training, and it can take years to realize one’s true potential.  Be honest and set goals that are both measurable and challenging.  They should be modest and attainable, though significant enough to reward you with feelings of true accomplishment.  For the first year, try tracking the results over a three, four, or six month period.  Taking before-and-after pictures, keeing a training journal, and charting your progress can serve as reminders of where you started, and where you want to be.

Respect Yourself, Physically

Injury is a very real part of training that often comes with little or no warning.  Failure to warm-up, cool-down, stretch, and listen to your body’s warning signs are among the most common causes of sport-related injury.  Every training session should include time to prepare physically and mentally for your workout.  This should include ample stretching, a light warm up movement (such as stationary bike, elliptical, or skipping rope), and a few moments of concentration to clear the mind of distractions.  At the conclusion of your workout, perform a cool-down movement to help return your heart rate to normal.  Never end a workout on a heavy set or high-intensity exercise.  Finally, always be mindful of what your body is telling you.  Intense cramps, nausea, dizziness, fatique, and chills are all signs that the body has been pushed beyond a safe threshold.  If this happens, take a few minutes to rest and replensih fluid levels.

Choose the Right Supplements

Diet and nutrition are vital to the success of any athlete.  The body uses the nutrients from the foods and supplements consumed to construct new muscle fibers, repair damaged tissues, and replenish your energy reserves.  One of the worst mistakes a new athlete can make is to begin taking dietary supplements without first developing a firm understanding of what they are.  They body is incredibly productive and self-sufficient at younger ages, provided that it is being fed a well-balanced diet.  Some of the most fundamental sports nutrition supplements include whey protein, amino acids, and glutamine. Used as directed, they may provide the natural sports nutritional edge needed to excel.


Take Anti-Aging To A Whole NEW Level With Xocai

Xocai has developed an exclusive product line called XoVitality. Xocai XoVitality, infused with supporting ingredients, is the first-of-it’s-kind, cocoa-based anti-aging supplement. XoVitality helps you defy the aging process by offering you a new, youthful appearance, increased energy and improved overall wellness.

Worried about aging? Don’t be. Now you’ve got XoVitality. Xocai XoVitality Cacao Capsules is engineered to work at the cellular level to repair damaged cells, slow the aging process, enhance your health and recapture your youth.

Live Longer and Healthier 

There is overwhelming scientific evidence demonstrating that those of us who eat a diet rich in antioxidants and take antioxidant supplements will live longer, healthier lives. When it comes to aging, setting the clock back a few years may have more to do with consuming an antioxidant-rich diet than using any kind of skin cream to eliminate wrinkles.

Like all Xocai healthy chocolate products, the Xocai Cacao Capsules are scientifically designed to deliver the most potent antioxidant power, energy boosting, health promoting ingredients available in anti-aging capsules.

Each case of the Xocai Cacao Capsules will contain a month supply of the following three products which are designed to be taken together (1 capsule of each product daily).

Is It Possible To Turn Back The Clock On Aging?

When most people think of aging they think of wrinkles, hair loss or achy joints and muscles, but the problem of aging can be much more serious than that. Aging processes can be particularly hard on the heart, blood vessels and brain. This free radical damage, oxidative stress and inflammation take a toll on our vital organs and tissues, possibly leading to more serious health issues. By controlling free radicals, antioxidants can make the difference between life and death, as well as influence how fast and how well we age.

Every day we’re bombarded with products claiming to have the power to restore youth. Some purport to simply reduce wrinkles, others allege they can prevent illness, while still more proclaim the ability to boost energy, return vitality and bring back that ever-elusive youthful glow. But what does modern science say? Is it possible to turn back the clock? Luckily, Xocai has recently introduced its revolutionary answer to the aging question: XoVitality.

Xocai XoVitality Gives You Antioxidant Power

Unknown to most people, chronic inflammation is the primary contributor to dozens of conditions, ranging from cardiovascular disease and diabetes to dementia and fatigue. And inflammation starts in the cell, spreading to tissues, organs and entire systems.

To slow the effects of inflammation, Xocai has created XoVitality Antioxidant, a unique blend of powerful phytonutrients that protect the cells, optimize the body’s inflammatory mechanisms and slow the aging process.

Xocai XoVitality Gives You Heart And Brain Health 

The aging processes are particularly unkind to the heart, blood vessels and brain. Free radical damage, oxidative stress and inflammation wreak havoc on these vital organs and tissues.

Fortunately, XoVitality Heart & Brain delivers a comprehensive and powerful blend of ingredients that protect the heart and brain, revitalizing these key organs and systems, and allow you to enjoy a new vitality for years to come.

Xocai Vitality Gives You Energy And Immunity

As we age, our bodies’ abilities to defend against illness, free radicals and the onslaught of toxins diminish. This means that we feel sick more often, have less energy and suffer with overall poor health.

The good news is that XoVitality Immunity offers a potent array of nutrients that replenish the immune system, optimize its actions and empower a new level of defense tools for optimal wellness.

Benefits of Using Xocai XoVitality 

While other so-called anti-aging products concentrate on only one age defying characteristic, XoVitality, with its unique ingredient profile, is a whole body age defying product, working from the inside out to restore, replenish and revitalize your body.

Xocai XoVitality Cacao Capsules replenishes, restores and revitalizes the entire human body—one cell at a time. The result? A more youthful level of health and wellness! Here are some of the benefits that you can expect to experience from Xocai XoVitality:

Improved Immunity / Less Illness

Minimized Inflamation

Powerful Cardio System

Glowing, “Wrinkle Free” Skin

ReVitalized Energy

Enhanced Mental Activity

Healthy, “Pain Free” Joints

Improved Athletic Performance

Enhanced Sexual Performance

Less Stress

Improved Mood & Emotional Response

Visit www.AllHealthyChocolate.com today to find out more.

 

 

 


BEST CARBS, PROTEIN & FAT SOURCES FOR FAT LOSS

When the goal is to lose fat, sometimes people focus on the quantity of what they are eating more than on the quality and types of food they are putting in their mouths.  In all reality, up to 80% of successful results in weight loss depends on diet alone.  While food quantity is definitely important, fat loss results will almost certainly plateau if the wrong foods are being consumed.

Today’s society is very fast-moving and busy so it’s often hard to resist all the “quick and easy” meal options that are available.  The problem with fast food or packaged meals and snacks is that they are highly processed and contain chemicals, preservatives, excess sodium and are often packed with saturated fat and sugar.  Even pre-packaged “diet” meals contain added sodium and preservatives.  These foods can result in blood sugar spikes, excess fat storage, low energy levels, and bloating.  In order to attain the best fat loss (and health) results,iIt’s best to stick to foods that are as close to their natural state as possible.

CARBOHYDRATES

Whole grain and whole wheat pasta, brown rice, rolled oats, potatoes and sweet potatoes, cream of wheat, 100% whole wheat bread, beans and legumes, fruits such as berries, apples, and melons, and veggies are all carbs that are unprocessed and retain all of their natural nutrients and fiber.  They won’t spike blood sugar and will be used more efficiently for energy instead of fat for storage!

PROTEIN

As with carbs, protein that is unprocessed is always best.  Also, some protein can be high in saturated animal fats, which should be highly avoided.  Lean protein that is close to its natural state includes skinless chicken breast, skinless turkey breast, pork  tenderloin, white fish and salmon, shellfish, lean beef (loin or round), egg whites, and low-fat cottage cheese.  Whey protein powder is also a great way to consume lean protein.

FAT

Anything natural and unsaturated is the way to go.  It’s best to stick to Monounsaturated and Polyunsaturated fats such as olive oil, flax seed oil, avocado, nuts and seeds, and natural nut butters.

Switching over to an unprocessed and natural food diet might take some getting used to and will probably require more cooking and preparation in some cases, but the results will be incomparable.  Fat loss can be a difficult task, but if the diet is clean and natural, fat won’t have a chance!

By Becky Conti, C.P.T.  Fitness & Physique, Summer 2011


The High-Antioxidant Answer to Weight Loss

 

The Xocai High-Antioxidant Wellness System is the first and only of its kind

Everyone loves chocolate, right?  But when it comes to healhty foods, most people don’t typically include chocolate on the list.  For decades, we’ve been told repeatedly that chocolate is a sinful indulgence, loaded with fat, sugar and calories, that contributes only to poor health.  That view, however, is changing as a huge body of research overwhelmingly shows that cocoa and chocolate possess a wide range of health benefits from cardiovascular and brain health to improved energy and immune function.

When talking about chocolate and its health benefits, it’s crucial to know one thing – not all chocolate is created equal.  Steven Warren, M.D., Xocai’s chief scientific officer, says that unlike commercially produced chocolate, Xocai’s products utilize a premium-grade, healthy chocolate unlike any other on the market.  “Because we process our cocao properly, our chocolate retains optimal levels of natural antioxidants, cocoa butter and other vital nutrients,” says Dr. Warren.  “Even better is that our chocolate delivers a rich, robust chocolate flavor that surpasses most chocolates out there.”

Cacao is an Antioxidant Powerhouse

Over the last couple of decades, scientists have increasingly focused on cocoa and chocolate as well as cacao, the plant food they are made from, as a source of optimal nutrition.  The primary aspect of cacao’s health benefits resides in it being one of the top antioxidant containing foods known today.  Antioxidants are compounds that neutralize free radicals or rogue molecules that damage cells and tissues in the body and contribute to literally dozens of diseases.

Cacao contains several classes of antioxidants, including flavanols and flavonoids, both of which are known to protect the body in a variety of ways.  “Cacao truly is unique in its antioxidant profile,” says Dr. Warren.  “Hundreds of studies show that the flavanols and other antioxidants in cacao are powerful protectors of the human body.”

Chocolate Comes Full Circle

When chocolate was first created from cacao beans by Mesoamerican cultures thousands of years ago, it was a drink that retained the antioxidant richness of cacao.  Not too long after it was imported to Europe, however, chocolatiers discovered that adding alkali to cacao, a process called “dutching,” could reduce the bitterness of the cacao and improve its flavor.  Unfortunately, dutching also significantly degraded the nutrient content of the chocolate.

Modern chocolate manufacturers have continued the practice of “dutching,” as well as the incorporation of sugars, unhealthy fats, and chemicals.  “The end product of most chocolates little resembles the antioxidant-rich cacao brought forth centuries ago,” says Dr. Warren.  “In fact, chocolate candy became one of the modern world’s first ‘junk’ foods.”

The good news is that Xocai has recaptured the original nutritional goodness of cacao, thanks to a proprietary cold-processing method that does not destroy the flavanols and other nutrients found naturally in cacao.  Xocai’s chocolate also retains natural cocoa butter, uses low-glycemic natural sweetners, and does not contain “fillers” such as milk solids, oils, or artificial preservatives.

In fact, so revolutionary was Xocai’s chocolate that it was the original creator of the healthy chocolate category.  Its continued development of unique products and commitment to the highest quality of nutrient-rich chocolate allows Xocai to continue at the forefront of the healthy chocolate industry.

Xocai Shows Weight Loss Potential

Mentioned earlier are several health benefits of dark, healthy chocolate.  One other benefit of regularly consuming cacao that is now coming to light is that of healthy, sustained weight loss.

The obesity plague in modern society is real.  In fact, health experts are now saying that obesity is overtaking heart disease as the number-one killer in America.  Obesity costs the country as much as $147 billion every year, not to mention countless lives and untold suffering, and that amount will certainly contiue to grow.

Interestingly, however, science is beginning to make a strong connection between free radical damage, also known as oxidative stress, and weight gain.  Free radicals are unstable rogue molecules that roam the body, damaging cells, tissues and organs.  The results of oxidative stress are widespread and include heart disease, cancer, and diabetes.  Now, scientists are adding obesity to that list.

The good news is that a high-antioxidant diet can help neutralize free radicals and the increased tendency of gaining weight.  Xocai High-Antioxidant Weight-Loss System, which features its renowned antioxidant powerhouse cacao, is the first and only high-antioxidant program to give consumers the tools they need to get rid of those unwanted pounds.