Chocolate is Medicine
Cacao Heals Our Heart
A cacao ceremony creates the space for transformation and opens us up to love
What is cacao?
It’s a plant medicine, the purest form of raw chocolate, revered and used for millennia for its healing properties, now classed as a ‘superfood’
Cacao is the Mayan name for the bean; the seed of the fruit from the Theobroma Cacao tree, which is native to the Amazon basin
In ancient Greek, ‘theo’ translates as God, and ‘broma’ as food, so it’s literally ‘food of the Gods’
What does it do? The science bit…
There’s a whole lot of goodness in cacao – worthy of a research paper, of which there are many. Here’s a snapshot:
Serotonin, dopamine, phenylethylamine and anadamide help reduce stress, anxiety and the perception of pain, regulate mood and appetite, keep you alert and focused, and produce feelings of excitement, euphoria, bliss and joy
The antioxidants in cacao counteract the damaging effects of oxidation in the cells, helping to prevent the development of chronic disease, as well as reducing blood pressure and the build up of fatty deposits on the artery walls
Studies show a 30-40% increase of blood flowing to the brain, which helps productivity, clarity and decision-making. Oxygenation of the body increases by more than 80%, which will make your skin smooth and glowing
The high source of magnesium is used in the brain’s key functions, including memory, and helps the body’s muscles relax, essential for the effectiveness of the heart. Cacao also has one of the highest concentrations of iron, sulphur and available calcium of any food
The Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitors serve as effective anti-depressants. Cacao detoxifies the liver and kidneys, and it’s an aphrodisiac
And, after all that buzz, it’ll even help you sleep better
What does it do? The spiritual bit…
As well as making your heart beat stronger and faster, Cacao is also a spiritual heart opener. It allows you to drop down from a place of mind-self centeredness to body-heart consciousness. You’ll likely become less judgemental, more compassionate, empathetic and loving, and you’ll be able to connect more deeply, authentically and intimately with yourself and others
Cacao can often bring, both pleasurable and painful, messages to the surface about your inner reality. The identification of limiting behaviours or beliefs, thoughts or feelings, and the insights, inspiration and creative ideas that emerge will help you to move forward in life with renewed vigour and purpose
Cacao helps you to feel, and may result in an emotional release, whether laughter or tears. It’s all welcome, and creates space for the new to unfold
The egoic mind chatter calms, allowing you to connect with your true nature. You’re likely to experience a deep sense of joy and peace as you tap in to something bigger; God, the Universe, your higher self, whatever you want to call it; feeling at one with all that is
What is ceremony?
It’s a chance to give yourself time to stop, tune in, speak what’s true and set intentions for how you want to move forward
What format does a cacao ceremony take?
We sit in circle and connect with each other and the spirit of cacao. We drink together, sharing what’s in our hearts and listening to those of others. Meditation, Sound Healing and Dance may or may not form part of the ceremony
What do I need to do before and after?
Avoid alcohol the night before and caffeine on the day. A simple, plant-based diet is recommended for at least 24 hours in advance and it’s best to avoid all food 2-3 hours before ceremony
Schedule some downtime afterwards, something quiet and nourishing just for you
Are there any precautions to take?
It is best to take a small amount of cacao if you are on high doses of anti-depressants or are pregnant. If in doubt, check with your doctor
If you are undergoing treatment for a serious illness like cancer, have a heart condition or very low blood pressure; please check with your doctor before ceremony
Where is the cacao sourced?
The cacao comes direct from indigenous famers in Guatemala and is turned from bean to paste by my Mayan friends, Izaias and Izabel and their extended family
As a teenager, Izaias was called to work with cacao through his dreams. He was trained by the shamans of his land. He holds his own ceremonies with his wife, Izabel in San Marcos, Lake Atitlán
All the cacao is raw, organic, non-GMO, fairtrade, solar dried and ceremonial grade