“Banned” Food is the Secret to PERFECT Gut Health

Q: I’ve been seeing all of this research on how good chocolate is for your health. But I gave it up a long time ago, and it all sounds like a lot of baloney to me. Would you really recommend it to patients?

— Judy Q.

Dr. Scott: First off, I understand your skepticism… I really do. Most of the time, when something makes our taste buds happy, it’s usually terrible for our health.

And let me make a clear and important distinction here – when researchers are talking about chocolate, they mean real cocoa. Not the sugar-loaded junk in your supermarket candy aisle.

But as far as cocoa is concerned, it’s time to officially lift the ban. Because a new study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition shows that it can make your tummy and tongue happy at the same time.

I’m sure you’ve heard before that good health starts in your gut. There are trillions of bacteria in our guts that support our immune system, digest our food, improve our metabolism, and work with us to make us healthier (or not).

When the bacteria are in perfect balance you are healthy. If not, you end up with digestive problems (and whole-body problems).

Chronic bacteria imbalance results in conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome, inflammatory bowel syndrome, and diseases far from your gut including allergies, asthma, arthritis, and even cancer.

It is in your best interests to keep your gut bugs as happy as possible.

That’s where cocoa enters the picture.

Cocoa has many benefits including acting as a powerful antioxidant, lowering cholesterol, slowing down mental decline, and keeping our hearts healthy.

But the new study showed that cocoa is great for our digestive tract.

When we eat chocolate, we don’t digest all of it, and this leaves some cocoa for our gut bacteria. The gut bacteria then take cocoa and change it into smaller components that we can then absorb.

This is great news for our bodies, because many of these small molecules digested by our gut bacteria support our good health.

Many studies have shown that cocoa helps to reduce inflammation in the gut. Cocoa also seems to promote the growth of good bacteria over bad bacteria – further improving our health.

But here is what no one is telling you about chocolate studies – scientists use very high levels of cocoa to see the results they are seeing.

The cocoa they use is like Baker’s chocolate or powered cocoa – think chocolate before sugar and fat are added.

So, before you rush out and grab a Snickers bar, thinking you are doing your body a favor, think again. The sugar in that kind of chocolate will wipe out any benefit you might be getting from the small amount of cocoa in the bar.

If you want to get the benefit of anti-inflammation, and better gut health, look for a bar that is 80 percent cocoa or above.

Want me to answer your question next? Email me at askdrscott@livingwelldaily.com

Health and Happiness,

Scott Olson

Dr. Scott Olson, ND

Ed. Note: Please send your feedback: feedback@livingwelldaily.com – and click here to like us on Facebook.

Dr. Scott Olson, ND

Written By Dr. Scott Olson, ND

Nearly 25 years ago, failed mainstream medical treatments left Dr. Olson in constant pain – and his health in ruins. And that’s when he did something REVOLUTIONARY. He began his career in medicine – and dedicated his life to uncovering the true, underlying causes of disease.
Through his innovative medical practices in Tennessee and Colorado, Dr. Olson has helped cure countless seniors from across America of arthritis… heart disease… diabetes… and even cancer. All without risky prescription drugs or painful surgeries.

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