A beautiful and gentle medicine that Jimmy and I love to personally use is ceremonial cacao. What’s the difference between ceremonial cacao and other cacao products?
To put simply, ceremonial cacao is 100% pure cacao bean. The beans are roasted at a low temperature, cracked, stone ground, and is never tempered. The flavour profile comes from a fermentation process which then helps to activate the natural compounds that are contained within the beans.
We source our cacao from our beloved Mama Bali where the farmers perform ceremonies for the cacao during every stage of the planting, growing, harvesting and fermenting. The Balinese people bless the cacao with their intentions, and if you've ever had the chance to spend some time with a Balinese person, you'll know just how potent this can be!
We have all probably heard of superfoods by now. Superfoods are food that are exceptionally dense in nutrients, rich in compounds and with minimum calories. Ceremonial cacao can definitely be considered as a superfood. It contains 300-1200 individual constituents and is full of beneficial minerals and neuro-chemicals that affects both our states of mind and wellbeing.
When we drink a cup of ceremonial cacao, high levels of magnesium is absorbed. And for many of us who eat a traditional western diet, magnesium is a mineral that we are chronically deficient in. It is an essential mineral that is involved in over 300 chemical reactions in the body. Our muscles need it, our nerves need it, our immune system needs it, and our hearts need it.
Not only does this medicine help with functions of the brain (which includes memory and concentration), it also help the heart to help relax it’s blood vessels to decrease any strain that is present, regulates blood pressure which decreases the risks of cardiovascular disease, and improves blood flow due to the theobromine. In addition relaxing the heart, the muscular system also gets a chance to relax as this medicine is also a vasodilator.
This compound (theobromine) also provides both a physical and mental energy boost as it has a similar structure to caffeine, although the stimulating effects are noticeably milder and longer-lasting. You won't normally find yourself dealing with the jitters that a cup of Joe can often give you. Theobromine is also known to be a potent anti-inflammatory as it reduces oxidative stress down to the cellular level.
The most notable neurotransmitters and neuro-modulators that this medicine contains are serotonin (helps with stress and wellbeing), norepinephrine (the joy molecule), dopamine (feel good chemical), anandamide (bliss molecule and moderates pain), phenylethylamine (CNS stimulant and responsible for the feeling of euphoria). Ceremonial cacao also has MAO inhibitors which allow more of these neurotransmitters to remain in the brain which consequently elevates mood through enhanced brain cell communication.
As mentioned above, anandamide is also known as the "bliss molecule. It's name is derived from the Sanskit word "ananda", which translates to "bliss"in English. It is a lipid which binds to cannabanoid receptors, is part of the endocannabanoid system and is naturally endogenous . It has also been shown that ceremonial cacao has a molecular structure that mimics cannabinoids and creates experiential and physiological results very similar to sativa. No wonder it's been known to be a heart opening medicine!
Furthermore, ceremonial cacao is the highest source of chromium (metabolises nutrients), also high in copper (supports the immune system and forms collagen), potassium (reduces menstrual cramps and promotes healthy skin), calcium (teeth and bone health), magnesium (lowers the risk of type 2 diabetes and helps with depression and anxiety), zinc (supports the immune system and aids recovery), sulfur (antibacterial for healthy skin), iron (boosts hemoglobin), phosphorus (bone strength), and Vitamins E, B1, B2, B3, B5, B9.
Finally, the bitterness from ceremonial cacao (remember, you’re not drinking a mug of hot chocolate) helps to release to the emotions that are stored and blocked in the liver. When we store emotions in the body, emotions that have yet to be processed and released, it can cause imbalances and can contribute to mental and physical health issues.
There are still so many more benefits to this wonderful medicine but I will just end with saying that I hope you have a chance to experience it's healing effects for yourself. Perhaps one day, you and I will be able to share a cup together and feel our hearts open. Why? Well, we have most likely become experts at armouring the heart. The work now is soften those walls and allow ourselves to fully feel what it's like to live from this space; to really feel what it's like to be alive.
With all my love,
Please note that you should check with your health professional or doctor before ingesting ceremonial cacao if you take hypertension medications, have a serious heart condition or if you're taking antidepressants.