Cacao powder, Peruvian, organic 1kg
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Legendary cacao has a long history of medicinal use throughout Mesoamerica and South America. Today, science confirms chocolate has many favourable qualities that support psychological well-being. This magical bean offers great benefits when the cacao is high-quality, raw and organic. The n...
Legendary cacao has a long history of medicinal use throughout Mesoamerica and South America. Today, science confirms chocolate has many favourable qualities that support psychological well-being. This magical bean offers great benefits when the cacao is high-quality, raw and organic. The native people of the Americas extolled the merits of cacao with oral histories, pottery, stonework, and coloured documents that chronicled its use in rituals as well as in everyday life. The Mayan and Mexica religions believed cacao had divine origins.
According to Mayan legend, after humans were created by the goddess Xmucane, the God Sovereign Plumed Serpent gave cacao to the Maya. When Europeans began exploring the New World, Columbus and his crew were the first to encounter cacao when they seized a canoe at Guanaja that was filled with strange 'almonds'. Eventually it was discovered the 'almonds' were actually cacao beans used as a source of currency in Mesoamerica. Preparations are well documented by the explorers who came in contact with cacao during their travels.
Cacao medicinal properties were noted to alleviate fever, anaemia, poor appetite, metal fatigue and poor breast milk production, as well as tuberculosis, gout, kidney stones and low virility. This delicious bean was famous for healing the nervous system and improving digestion and elimination. Research confirms that chocolate helps to relieve emotional stress. Stress hormones and stress-related biochemical agents were reduced when volunteers, who rated themselves as highly stressed, consumed 1.4 ounces of dark chocolate per day for a period of two weeks. Another study found that cacao flavanols (CF) improve cognitive function. In a randomized, double-blind trial, 30 healthy adults consumed either 520 mg or 994 mg of a CF infused beverage. Both groups showed significant improvement in mental acuity, while a reduction in 'mental fatigue' was only found with the lower consumption of 520 mg.
The researchers suspect the results may be related to the effects of CF on blood flow. Chocolate has the ability to trigger the release of dopamine and the endorphin phenylethylamine, both of which soothe the symptoms of premenstrual syndrome and depression. Due to its high valeric acid content, cacao has stress relieving properties despite the presence of the stimulants theobromine and caffeine. Yet not all chocolate is created equal. Organic, raw cacao reigns supreme with maximum nutrient content compared to other forms. Since raw chocolate is processed at low temperatures, it retains much more of its famed nutritional value than if it were roasted.
As seen in David Wolfe's, "Naked Chocolate: The Astounding Truth About the World's Greatest Food", raw chocolate has many high-quality nutrients such as manganese, vitamin C, and omega 6 fatty acids. Raw cacao also contains powerful antioxidants along with a significant amount of chromium, which balances blood sugar levels. Additional benefits are found in neurotransmitter modulating agents that act as natural antidepressants. "They allow our neurotransmitters like serotonin to remain in our bloodstream longer that usual. "