In recent years, ceremonial grade cacao has become increasingly popular as more people discover its amazing healing properties. The drive toward ceremonial grade cacao isn’t surprising in the least. The use of cacao extends back centuries, millions using its therapeutic benefits to create a better lifestyle.
THE HISTORY OF CACAO
Ancient people have found the benefits of cacao over 4000 years before our time.
In cultures like Mayans, Aztecs, Incas, and more in Mesoamerica, cacao has long found root in their rich history. Many today still call cacao the Food of the Gods, as it was a highly prized drink amongst the elite and was used in feasts, rituals, and ceremonies to connect further with the deities. This is much like the ceremonial function of wine in cultures to the East of the Americas.
(Alt Text and Description: Ancient Mayan vase depicting women pouring the cacao into another vessel, a process used to make cacao foam)
CACAO VS COCOA
Cacao pods come from the Theobroma cacao tree and the beans within each pod are what we commonly know of as cacao. Known as chocolātl to the Aztecs, this word means ‘bitter water’ or ‘bitter drink’ after its unique taste separate from the sweetness we know today.
On the other hand, cocoa is the product after humans have processed it. Only about 20-30% of cocoa (or chocolate) is cacao beans, while the other portion is sweeteners and other additives.
That being said, cacao is different from cocoa. Cacao is what is naturally found hanging from the trees in Mesoamerica and can be harvested and transformed into cacao butter, whereas cocoa is the processed product we’re used to today, having been combined with sweeteners and other additives.
Today, many still use cacao in ceremonies and to create healthy rituals.
But unlike the ancient people who used cacao in their religious and political practices, people today use cacao as a way to open their hearts and minds to what they crave most.
Of course, each ceremony will be different from the last based on whomever your ceremony facilitator is, but the goal is the same for all.
With cacao ceremonies, you’ll be led through setting your intentions. It’s a journey of healing therapy that connects you to the highest order of your own power through ingesting cacao.
Your unique journey comes through your power and truth, and your destination will be altered based on whatever your ultimate goal is. You can reflect on your mindset and find clarity with the use of cacao.
Many have found their body becoming healthier after implementing cacao into their daily routine.
For one, cacao is packed full of nutrients your body needs, including iron, protein, magnesium, potassium, and fiber.
Improved Cardiac Health
Cacao is known for its abundance of flavonoids, which aid in keeping your heart and cardiac system healthy. The flavonoids have been known to lower blood pressure, prevent blood clots, and even reduce the risk of heart disease.
As stated above, cacao has the ability to lower the inflammation in your cardiovascular system. However, the reduction of inflammation can also aid in pain relief, arthritis, irritable bowel syndrome and whatever other digestive issues you may have.
MORNING COFFEE SUBSTITUTE
Cacao is packed full of an alkaloid called theobromine, a compound that naturally gives you energy. With this in mind, it’s no surprise people have been making the switch from their morning coffee to cacao. Not only do you get the much needed energy, you’ll also gain a healthier morning ritual and be in a better headspace.
Theobromine VS Caffeine
Caffeine has become the source of much of our energy today. Many love it because it gives you a quick energy high, but it also has numerous side effects.
For one, the energy gained from caffeine can lead to a major dip in energy, making you crash midday and leaving you feeling groggy. Also, many get their caffeine from coffee, which can upset the stomach and leave you feeling sick.
Theobromine is considered a gentler stimulant than caffeine because it slowly gives you the energy you want. Plus, the energy you get won’t lead to a midday energy crash that forces you to suck down more product. Instead, you’ll remain clear and alert.
If you have anxiety, theobromine is a great substitute for caffeine. Because of the gentle nature of theobromine, you’ll be able to get the convenient energy you crave without raising your anxiety or stress levels. We’ll talk more about this in the next section.
CREATE A BETTER MORNING RITUAL
When you drink cacao, there’s a positive impact on your brain’s natural functions. Cacao contains and aids in the regulation of several chemicals known to help in your body’s ability to stay calm and remain happy.
Theobromine. As we mentioned earlier, this neurotransmitter gives you loads of energy without risking your clarity or focus.
Anandamide. Offers you the feeling of euphoria and aids in regulating your mood, appetite, and pain. If you’ve ever had a runner’s high, this is the same chemical released in your brain.
Tryptophan. Essential for the regulation of mood within your brain. Tryptophan aids in producing serotonin, which is one of the key factors in keeping you happy and healthy.
Serotonin. One of the most popular neurotransmitters talked about today. A decreased amount of serotonin is one of the main reasons for the increase in anxiety and depression rates. By helping your body regulate this neurotransmitter, you’ll be able to better regulate your mood, sleep, and pain naturally.
HOW TO PREPARE CEREMONIAL CACAO
There isn’t one right answer to this, and it’s within your rights to change your cacao to your specific needs and desires. Our Ceremonial Grade Cacao paste is created with you in mind, and it has been used in countless cacao ceremonies with one of our founders.
Check out this recipe. Feel free to add herbs, spices, and sweeteners to your liking.
- Fill your favorite mug ¼ full with water. Pour this into a pot.
- With a low flame, add in 2 TBSP of pure ceremonial cacao. Stir constantly until creamy and melted.
- Fill the same mug as step one ¾ full of natural oat milk or any other plant based milk,. Then add this to your melted cacao and stir. You’ll see the delicious oils from the cacao will start to swirl on top.
- Add your sweetener of choice for a little extra delight. We recommend agave.
- Finally, pour into your mug and stir one last time to blend all the rich flavors.
Hold your mug to your heart.
Set your intention.
Take a deep breath
Sip and enjoy.