Ceremonial-Grade Cacao: What is it?
What makes Cacao “Ceremonial-Grade?”
And why does it matter?
100% pure cacao-bean paste contains a much higher quantity of beneficial, health-restoring, and mood-elevating compounds than any other cacao-based product on the market (like cacao powder, non-ceremonial cacao paste, dark chocolate, etc).
The ingestion of cacao grown through the use of pesticides, synthetic fertilizers, and genetic modification is potentially harmful for us, and therefore, unfit for ceremonial use.
Criollo, Trinitario, Forastero and other non-GMO cacao beans contain more beneficial compounds, and taste better too. Also, it’s important to source from farmers growing a variety of crops, never large monoculture plantations.
The heating processed used to make Cacao Powders, Cacoa, (most) chocolate bars and other processed cacao products removes most of the nutrients.
Most cacao products contain sugar, chemicals or other additives that negatively impact it’s benefits.
We believe it’s crucial for Cacao to be sustainably and ethically sourced from farmers who get paid a fair wage, and therefore put love and care into cultivating the cacao. It makes a difference.
Cacao: The Superfood of all Superfoods
Superfoods are just that – foods that contain significantly higher quantities of antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, and other health-boosting, anti-aging, disease-fighting goodies. And given the abundance of vitamins and minerals in Cacao, it’s often dubbed the Superfood of all Superfoods.
Raw Organic Cacao has over 40 times the antioxidants of blueberries. Yes, 40 times! It has an amazing ORAC score of 98,000 per 100g, vs blueberries at a mere 2,400. ORAC scores measure the ability of antioxidants to absorb free radicals (that come from pollution and toxins in our environment), which cause cell and tissue damage and can lead to diseases such as cancer.
Raw Organic Cacao is the highest plant-based sources of magnesium, the most deficient mineral in the Western world. Magnesium is important for a healthy heart, and helps turn glucose into energy enabling your brain to work with laser-sharp clarity and focus. The reason why you might turn to a bar of chocolate during an all-nighter at your desk!
On a plant-based/vegan diet and looking for iron? The search is over! Cacao is the highest plant-based source of iron known to man, at a whopping 7.3mg per 100g. This compares to beef and lamb at 2.5mg, and spinach at 3.6mg. Note: the iron in cacao is non-heme (as is all plant-based iron), so to get the maximum benefits you’ll want to combine it with some vitamin C. Think oranges, kiwifruit, superfoods like gubinge or camu camu (which have 40x more vitamin C than oranges).
Pure Organic Cacao has more calcium than cow’s milk, at 160mg per 100g vs only 125mg per 100ml of milk. Time to switch out the regular latte for a nutritious cup of ceremonial cacao.
Our body uses up a lot of potassium every day; we need far more of it than we need calcium or magnesium. It helps to maintain the right fluid balance in the body, it keeps our blood pressure stable and, like magnesium, it’s required for muscle function and for nerve signals to travel around the body. Around 75% of our recommended intake of potassium is provided per 100g of cacao (1524mg*), or around 28% in one 100%-cacao chocolate bar.
Cacao is packed with flavonoids, which have been shown to help lower blood pressure, improve blood flow to the brain and heart, and aid in preventing blood clots. Flavonoids may also help increase insulin sensitivity, reducing your risk of diabetes, and reduce inflammation throughout your body. Reduced inflammation may lessen your risk of some cancers, diabetes, arthritis, depression, and Alzheimer’s disease.
Zinc is vital for our immune system, bone health, healing, and for good hormone balance and fertility. Cacao can provide around 20% of the recommended amount of zinc in one Ceremonial drink.
Cacao contains the "Bliss Molecule" (i.e. Anandamide), a fatty acid neurotransmitter, which stimulates a sense of mental wellness and happiness. Whether you want to feel self-love, or cultivate a feeling of love with a partner or group, cacao has got your back! In addition, Cacao is a great source of four scientifically proven “feel good” chemicals – serotonin, tryptophan, tyrosine and phenylethylamine. These neurotransmitters are associated with cozy feelings of well-being, happiness, and can even alleviate depression.