Are You Sure Raw Chocolate Caused Your Adrenal Fatigue? : The Renegade Health Show Episode #863

Tuesday Jul 12 | BY |
| Comments (40)

I have another question today that is in line with yesterday’s video…

The question was this (from Dan):

Did you ever consider that chocolate did not burn out your adrenals?

Yes, I definitely did and my complete answer is here…

Your question of the day: When was the last time you ate chocolate?

Click here, scroll down to the bottom of the page and leave your comments now!

Live Awesome!

Kevin Gianni

Kevin Gianni is a health author, activist and blogger. He started seriously researching personal and preventative natural health therapies in 2002 when he was struck with the reality that cancer ran deep in his family and if he didn’t change the way he was living — he might go down that same path. Since then, he’s written and edited 6 books on the subject of natural health, diet and fitness. During this time, he’s constantly been humbled by what experts claim they know and what actually is true. This has led him to experiment with many diets and protocols — including vegan, raw food, fasting, medical treatments and more — to find out what is myth and what really works in the real world.

Kevin has also traveled around the world searching for the best protocols, foods, medicines and clinics around and bringing them to the readers of his blog — which is one of the most widely read natural health blogs in the world with hundreds of thousands of visitors a month from over 150 countries around the world.


Comments are closed for this post.

  1. Yamina says:

    The last time was… this morning ! (Shame on me…) Untill having bananas, I choosed Mousse au chocolat blanc de Lindt Creation (white chocolate), then another, white too, with coconut, this one, an organic from Bonneterre. I felt like needing a superfood (and supergood…) because too much activity for the day, and those bananas really make me sick, too heavy for me. Very caloric in small quantity, that is (one) of the reason that I ate this chocolate. The other my natural greed, and the other, no preparation, no cleaning ! I never feel adrenal symptoms, never have cold hands. Now, I am going to read your article about the shampoo that makes you fat (lol !) I have hardly understand a word in the title… Linguee, heeeelp ! My shampoo is a shampoo from a supermarket, the less expensive, about 0,99 euros, a liter and half. My hair is wonderful. The quality of your hair doesn’t depend on your shampoo but on your health. Returning on the chocolate subject, black chocolate is exciting because of theobromine, something that is worse that caffeine, have I read somewhere… I think so.

  2. shine says:

    8 months – it took me a while to accept the information coming out about cacao and then to give it up…now im making much tastier things with carob and it feels better not to be getting the highs nice as they were

  3. Dee says:

    Last night, love chocolate.

  4. Joanna says:

    Sounds like you are more sensitive to theobromine than most, and raw chocolate can have higher amounts of theobromine in it.

  5. Brenda says:

    Just maybe you should do deeper and check out your blood type or you a A+, A-, B, AB or O your food types are predetermined. Let me know what you think.


  6. Debbie says:

    Come on! Chocolate is almost as good as sex! In fact many people prefer it.
    I have it regularly, only dark chocolate, almost always raw, always organic as I don’t want any nasty GMOs (beet sugar), and only in small quantities, but I’d say weekly! ;O)

  7. brian says:

    I had one piece of Camino’s dark baking chocolate 2 days ago. According to Jeremy, cooked cacao is less toxic.

    According to Dr. Mercola, the amount of chocolate to consume should be like 7 or 14 grams (I can’t remember). Supposedly they protect your brain from damage if there is stroke. Any more and the benefits would be cancelled out. They’re quite addictive though.

    Do other sources of stimulants like tea, yerba mate, or coffee cause adrenal fatigue like cacao do?

  8. Jessica says:

    I’m very sensitive to it as well as hot peppers! If I eat it the next day my hearing is so sensitive it hurts to hear myself talk!

  9. Noni says:

    I’ve never noticed any negative response to eating chocolate…..until I had a raw cacao with agave dessert one night at a public yoga event…a few hours later it felt like my digestive system shut down. Hard to remember exactly how it felt, but nothing was processing right…after a few colonics and a few weeks, I tried eating a small amount of chocolate ice cream. A very similar response happened. I know there is information out there on how raw cacao can be toxic to the liver….so now I just stay happily away from chocolate!

  10. Allen says:

    Totally off topic but are you aware that Kevin has a guitar-playing doppelganger?

  11. Kat says:

    Awesome video, Kevin!! Great info & insight! Thank you for being so transparent & honest with your viewers. I have profound respect for you & your integrity.

    I am very sensitive to raw cacao as well, and a few years ago had similar symptoms to yours, as well as heart palpatations & insomnia when I consumed raw cacao (which back then was every day in a chocolate shake). Once I realized it could be the cacao, I eliminated it (with much sadness!) & my symptoms disappeared immediately. Since then I’ve discovered that carob is a great replacement for cacao & I love it! I can also consume a small amount of raw cacao without symptoms, I just have to be careful. Sometimes I make a recipe & use both carob & cacao & am not bothered. It also helps if I’ve had a clean diet all day, with lots of greens &/or green juice. The last time I had raw cacao was a few weeks ago.

    Thanks again, Kevin. 🙂

  12. Beatrice says:

    I love chocolate and am in denial on how it effects my health. Thank you for your honest info. You are awesome Kevin and for that I am grateful:)

  13. Meri says:

    This morning I used cacao powder in my breakfast. No nasty symptoms yet 🙂
    I do notice unsettled anxiety type feelings when I’ve had high doses of caffeine though. I think that’s the cause so usually avoid it.

  14. The best way to PROVE TO YOURSELF once and for all if a “food” or “substance” is health-promoting or health-destroying (as most everything is OTHER than fresh raw fruits, greens, some veg, nuts and seeds!) is to “clear your petri dish” (your diet) for at least three months of ANY food other than fruit and greens and just enough seeds, nuts to sustain your EXTRA fat needs if you must endure super cold weather. Of course, this is done AFTER any health issue or weight issue has been addressed. Then, eat nothing but the afore-mentioned fresh simple food. ADD in any of the “suspect” foods or substances. See what happens! ESPECIALLY if you are a serious athlete or savvy exerciser, you will CLEARLY see drops in perfomance and health in terms of how you feel, your sudden odors, trouble sleeping, etc. It becomes clear as day. Like any valued experiment, you must start with a clean petri dish and then add variables ONE at a time to see the reaction. Simple really. And extremely effective!

  15. Pamela says:

    Having chocolate while watching this – in a chocolate banana coconut smoothie!

  16. Basia says:

    Today. I feel a bit like an addict saying that–CA–Cacao-chocoholics Anonymous! I’m not sure if the addiction is to the cacao or the sugar actually in my case. But even without bad reactions to chocolate, these posts have inspired me to try to substitute carob more often, and perhaps one day, chocolate will be just a memory, like bread. Never thought I could quit that, but step by step, I did it!

  17. susie says:

    My favourite way to relax is to walk around the beautiful lakes surrounding my home, enjoying all that nature offers like the scent of beautiful flowers like lavender bushes, butterflies fluttering happily in the sun, a mother swan keeping a careful watch over her new baby cygnets, the breeze rustling the trees, the sun on my face. If I feel like it, I kick off my shoes to ground myself on the green grass. I arrive home feeling invigorated, refreshed and happy to be alive!

  18. Candy says:


    I don’t buy the raw but I buy the 85% Lindt Excellence Bars which is made of mostly cocoa no milk fat and very little surgar. I eat about 1 square a day usually which is only 50 calories and 1 gram of sugar. So the one bar will last me about 10 days if I keep it to just 1 square a day. But sometimes On the weekends when I go to the movies I may have about 3 squares which is still only about 3 grams of sugar. The rest of my diet I eat very healthy and I believe dark chocolate in small amounts is a great treat. I believe like David Wolfe that it has great antioxidants, vitamins and other benefits in it. Maybe the raw is too much and reacts that way because it is raw? I would not know for I have not tried it raw. But I do try to always pick bars that are 80% & higher. It does not make me hiper or feel bad or anything but great. Now regular chocolate bars with all the junk in them and high sugar like most which is 20 grams for 1 bar makes me sick….but I think it’s because of all the sugar and junk it’s made of.

    Anyway sorry Kevin and those who can’t tolerate it…because it is soooooooooo GOOD :)….

    Moderation is the key!!!!

  19. MM says:

    Chris at #14 excellent advise. I would also do a pulse test (Cocoa). Google it and it has nothing to do with chocolate. Even easier and simpler to know whether a food is a problem on reintroduction into the diet.

    In Australia we have an increase in kiwi fruit allergies in children. Is it something in the kiwi fruit or are we simply just eating too many of them as we can eat them all year round. They are no longer harder to come by as we can eat them all year round.

    Almonds and nuts are one of the healthiest nutrient dense foods that you can eat. If I drink almond milk, I experience nausea, no matter if the almonds are raw, organic or soaked. I also test for any residual chemicals along with mycotoxins, but the reaction is the same. I guess a bit like a peanut allergy but not as severe in that I would require an adrenaline injection. As I belong to the Type O blood group, I have put it down to lectins. In the beginning I was skeptical about the D’Adamo blood typing research, but now take it seriously. I have no symptoms if I eat almonds by the handful as it is really hard to eat too many of them.

    The same with wheat and grains, although with wheat and grain products there are no symptoms such as IBS or digestive problems, but I now know that wheat lectins trigger autoimmunity at distant sites in my body other than the digestive tract.

    So it is wise to eat a variety of foods and only those in season. This way the body has a chance to rid itself of the build up of certain lectins which can take months to breakdown and remove. Nature didn’t get it wrong, we did.


  20. Bashi says:

    Dear Kevin

    it is easy to blame certain foods for our ”downfalls”, but it is not a Food caused it – it is What drove you to take so much chocolate. Is it gluttony? Well you can drop chocolate and feel better for it but then later gluttony will take you to something else, then something else,perhaps that lovely cinnamon everyday for months on end? Something else will ”make ”you sick Kevin. It doesnt have to be gluttony either. It could be fear, fear of getting sick and thus on constant search and ingestion of ”special” foods – but that fear has been proven to be behind teenage acne,for example, fear of peer pressure that is [fear generates hormonal response in the body leading to acne]- just an example.
    It could be anything really,any brokenness we have inside – not food that makes us sick. And no,it is not greesy takeaways that make people sick,obese,etc. it is Why they eat that stuff. But you did the same with raw chocolate.Same reasons, different food.
    Food blaming is a clever deception designed to keep us from examining the ”why” and becoming free.
    So look into yourself and note what drives you – and that is a good word because when you are driven you are not in control – you are driven, taken for a ride by your brokenness to do whatever you do.
    You are honest with us,your readers, be honest with yourself too.
    Sharing this insight from good heart – we are all struggling in life with stuff,dont we/

  21. Gina says:

    Last night. 1 heaping tsp raw cacao powder, 1 skimpy tsp liquid bentonite clay, 1/2 cup hot water, 1/2 cup oat milk.

  22. MM says:

    Forgot to mention that I too have a sensitivity to chocolate. Brain fog, hangover feeling, tension in the neck. Feel like I have been poisoned. It takes a couple of days for these symptoms to dissipate. So thanks Kevin for highlighting this issue. Just because a food is considered a superfood doesn’t mean it super for all.

    Plants produce lectins which are self-protective compounds against fungal, bacterial, viral and predator attack. We know they are beneficial to plants and perhaps in small amounts maybe beneficial to humans. We know they are problematic in many people but may also be beneficial as antifungal and antibacterial proteins. Our understanding is still in its infancy and we will need more research to understand how to best utilise them without harming us. I think the answer lies in the cultural knowledge of traditional foods.

    We know once we move away or lose knowledge or our cultural and traditional foods we experience health problems We need to consider our individual biochemistry and genetics as our enzyme systems have taken hundreds of thousands if not millions of years to adapt if we go back to single cell organisms to evolve.

    No cacoa trees in the Apennine Mountains from where my ancestors come from:)


  23. Lisa says:

    Last time I ate chocolate was in the late 1980s. I was addicted and I swore it off (or perhaps I should say I vowed it off). Once, in the late 1990s, when I was feeling rebellious, I ate a couple mouthfuls of mint chocolate chip ice cream (probably no real chocolate involved in the making of THAT ice cream :)but that’s it. I have eaten some white “chocolate” off and on, but mostly off since I don’t really like it… hehehehe just gives me that smooth feeling in the mouth like chocolate used to. I gave it up cold turkey and am glad I did. I was a slave to it! Hard to find a woman who doesn’t eat chocolate… people look at you like you have two heads 🙂

  24. Nick says:

    Today and just about every day

  25. Susanna says:

    I had to leave a comment today because I have not had chocolate in many weeks and today I ate a large handfull of chocolate covered nuts(M&M’s)from a free dispensor at my daughters work. Later I felt exhaused, had to take a cat nap to get through the day. My gut feeling was the little gorge of chocolate that exhausted me.

  26. Kym says:

    I also feel overstimulated when I eat chocolate so luckily I’m fine about limiting it to a little occasionally. (Plenty of other things I find it hard to say no to, though. ;-)) As other people have mentioned, carob is a great replacement.

  27. Luli says:

    I watched a video when I was first researching a raw lifestyle/diet that talked about the theobromine which is good except in high quantities. I worry about getting addicted to anything especially with the addictive personalities in my family. As they say, “Too much of a good thing …” I’m actually down to about once a week now. It’s not raw chocolate but it is chocolate.

  28. Sharon says:

    I also had adrenal exhaustion. I cured it many years ago by not eating sugar to the best of my ability, all candy was out and most white stuff. I had recently started drinking coffee because free samples were being given at the grocery stores that I frequent.

    I started noticing myself being more fearful like the old days when I had phobias from my adrenal exhaustion. A few weeks ago I drank a cup of coffee and my body was on high jitters all day so I stopped for a few days.

    A week later I drank another cup and the jitters came back and lasted for a long time.

    I have not touched coffee now for three weeks and all is normal again.

    We really need to protect our adrenal glands. They help us handle stress in a normal way when they are healthy.

  29. : ) db says:

    The last time that I had chocolate? Hmm…this last week had “Organic Arriba Criollo Cacao Paste”. I really like this paste over the Cacao Bean. I find that my supply of paste whittling down while my beans are hanging around.

    I actually enjoy eating the paste (solid chunks of pure, unsweetened chocolate). Also would work very easily in a health shake (haven’t done one of these in a while).

  30. Lorien says:

    a week ago. Sometimes I eat cacao powder daily in a morning drink, sometimes I eat raw cacao nibs in a chia pudding with berries in the morning. I have no problems with it…..

  31. Lesley says:

    I love organic, fair trade dark chocolate but have cut back as it gives me hot flashes. I will only eat it occasionally as a treat, and prefer the dark over the raw cacao. The trouble with chocolate is that it is so addictive, especially to those with adrenal issues, it’s the crash and burn cycle like caffeine. My husband doesn’t drink caffeine but has a chocolate addiction, and cant just eat one or two squares.
    For those of you trying to kick the habit, try drinking one quart of green smoothies everyday for a month, and it will probably reduce your cravings significantly, if not completely.

  32. Sherri says:

    Nearly every day!
    I make my own raw cacao, coconut oil, agave or honey, some spices like cayenne…. too! I also add Pine Pollen, powdered E3-live, and sometimes goji or raspberries…. YUMMMMM 🙂

    I’ve done this for many years. Have only positive effects. I don’t over eat it. Only about a spoon at a time. Personally I think there are other issues involved when people have issues with cacao. I really don’t think its cacao itself.

  33. annette says:

    I am reading RAW FOOD WORKS edited and compiled by Diana Store. Great book! There is so much differing info out there and it can be confusing as with the chocolate debate. At the beginning of the book she talks about how a lot of leading health experts got together and there is a list of what the majority agreed on and saying “no” to chocolate was one of the decisions. My doctor says to stay away from it also…he says everybody should, even if it is not upsetting and your body is tolerating it, he thinks it is not a positive.

  34. Katherine says:

    Couple of hours ago…Mmmmmmmmm!

  35. George says:

    Every few months or so, I will buy one of those super-sized 100% cacao cooking bars. And I will eat the entire bar in a couple days.

    I’ve been doing this for many years and it does not seem to bother me.

    However, something that does bother me are green smoothies – just greens – no sugar. When I begin to approach 50% of my diet with them, I cannot sleep and become very tired during the day.

    This goes to show that everyone must develop their own custom program.

    That is why I like your statement that health is a process, not an event.

  36. LOL I just happened to eat some chocolate right before viewing this… so timely.
    I hate chocolate because I’m a slave to it. I hate that I have no self control (only when it comes to chocolate) and I can’t stop until it’s all gone. I only eat Black n Green’s organic chocolate. I can go months without even thinking about it, but as soon as it’s someone’s birthday, Christmas, Easter etc I go insane over it.
    Growing up, I used to eat chocolate every single day (SAD diet). I’ve always had cold hands and feet even after changing my diet. I can’t say that I noticed any difference when I cut chocolate out for months. My hands recently seemed to improve in temperature which may be due to either adding kelp powder or organic free range eggs into my diet over the past few months.
    But thinking about your question, yes my hands and feet are feeling more colder then they were just before I ate the chocolate just now. Plus all those symptoms your mentioned of adrenal fatigue sound just like me, so I will pay more attention to that from now on.

    Thanks Kevin

  37. Hugo says:

    Hello Kevin.

    Just a quick comment. Yes, i have had also problems like this and tummy aches when eating chocolate. However, i did a lot of research and find out it was because all of the chocolate in the market has been made hybrid and clone and into a form the call CCN51 (and others). But if you get the real stuff, the stuff the creator made, the so call heirloom cacao, then you get the real results. Today on the market this is only under the name Arriba Nacional.
    Hope this helps!

  38. Jolie says:

    I had chocolate today and should not have b/c I am fasting! I had a Uganda 80 percent chocolate bar. I am very sensitive to raw cacao also. When I have it, I get jittery.

  39. LynnCS says:

    Years! I don’t like chocolate much and it doesn’t agree with me either, so I’m glad I don’t obsess over it. Glad I don’t hve to deal with tht one. lol. : )

  40. Same here – if I eat too much chocolate or cacao, even if it is just a bit but every day for say a week in a row, I will not feel well.

    For me, Ashwaganda, Maca, Holy Basil and Chaga help to counteract, have you used any of them?



    Comments are closed for this post.