What are functional foods?
Functional foods are everywhere these days, in every health magazine, blog, YouTube channel, or social media health or wellness page. People claim they can do everything, from reducing cholesterol to preventing cancer providing you a better life. But, what exactly are functional foods?
Functional foods are ingredients that offer great health benefits that go beyond their nutritional value. Some types of functional foods are supplements that are designed to improve your health. Some examples include foods fortified with vitamins, minerals, probiotics, or fiber. However, foods like fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and grains, which are nutrient-rich ingredients, are often considered functional foods as well.
The concept originated in the 1980s when the Japanese government created foods with proven benefits that included benefits beyond those covered by basic nutrition like protein, carbs, etc.
Benefits of functional foods
As you can imagine by now, functional foods are associated with several health benefits. That’s why it’s important to include them in your diet on a daily basis, whether it’s on your full meal or on your snacks or drinks.
Preventing nutrient deficiencies
Functional foods are usually high in important nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, healthy fats, and fiber. So including on your daily basis conventional and fortified foods will help you get all the nutrients you need and have no nutrient deficiencies.
Protecting against disease
These types of foods provide important nutrients that help protect your body against disease. Many of them are rich in antioxidants, which help neutralize harmful compounds known as free radicals, helping prevent cell damage and certain chronic conditions. Some functional foods are high in omega-3 fatty acids, a healthy type of fat proven to reduce inflammation, boost brain function, and promote heart health.
How MCTs make Funky Fat Chocs functional
Do you know that our Funky Fat Chocs are considered functional foods? This doesn’t happen with any other chocolate bar since they need to follow some criteria. For example, all of the ingredients used in the making of our bars are clean and organic ingredients without any soy lecithin or lactose And you’ll probably ask, what does that mean? Well, that means that there are no artificial ingredients or fillers added, just natural and functional ingredients.
One of the main ingredients of our bars is the MCTs, which is one of the main reasons that they are functional. MCTs (Medium-Chain Triglycerides) are medium-length chains of fatty acids that, unlike long chains, go straight to the liver and are absorbed faster, improving mental clarity, performance, and memory. The liver digests them more easily and converts them into ketones which are a more steady energy source than glucose and help your body feel fuller for a longer period of time. For the Funky Fat Chocolate bars, we use C8 and C10, which have strong antibacterial and antifungal properties and have been shown to improve skin conditions like acne, psoriasis, and dermatophilosis. However, due to these properties they also improve gut health, and fight Candida Albicans.
The MCTs also improve digestion, since they are easier on digestion in comparison with other fats since they head straight to the liver. Capric acid adds more benefit to that by improving bile secretion and cholesterol metabolism, helping to speed up the digestion of other fats and avoiding leaky gut. And they also may help manage diabetes. Early evidence suggests MCT supplements are well-accepted in people with type 2 diabetes and may increase insulin sensitivity and pancreatic beta cell function.
Anyway, if you want to know more about the benefits and differences of the MCTs used in our Funky Fat chocs you’ll find a full article on our website.
Why Funky Fat Chocolates are functional foods
Ok, so we’ve seen why MCTs make Funky Fat Chocolates functional foods, but there are other ingredients that also make these chocolate bars functional as well.
First of all, as we’ve mentioned earlier all of the ingredients used in the bars are honest and organic. So there are no nasty or unhealthy ingredients. The chocolates are full of antioxidants, healthy fats, and vitamins with no artificial sugar or flavors.
The Peruvian cacao that is used in the Funky Fat Chocs is pure, rich, and organic, which is packed with antioxidants that, as we’ve seen, prevent cell damage and support blood flow, blood pressure, and inflammation. It’s also packed with healthy fats, soluble fiber, and essential minerals. The cacao butter used in the bars is high in fatty acids to keep your body active. Including it in your diet can decrease inflammation and help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, lowers levels of LDL, and increases HDL, diabetes, and/or stroke. It also contains vitamin E to support good vision, brain, skin, and blood.
Instead of sugar, which by now we are aware of how damaging it is for our health, we use Organic Erythritol, which is a natural sweetener. Since its molecule is so small and simple and has a 0 GI (glycaemic index). It is easily digested, helps hydrate your colon, protects the intestinal tissue, and purifies the colon from pathological organisms. It also has antioxidant properties fighting oxidative stress and preventing cancer, diabetes, and heart disease. And the last ingredient you’ll find in the Funky Fat Choc is acacia fiber. We combine MCT oil with acacia fiber as the binding agent and as an added functional ingredient. Acacia Fiber is a soluble fiber that helps slow digestion, has zero net carbs, helps manage blood glucose levels after meals, and promotes gut health.
So now that you know what are functional foods and that our chocolate bars the healthiest functional chocolate bars you’ll find out there, do yourself a favor and fill your snack corner with them so you’ll always have them on hand whether you're snacking at home or on the go.
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