When you hear the word “cacao”, do you automatically think of a rich, chocolate dessert?
There's no denying cacao is a tasty treat. But when you think of cacao, the first thing that should come to mind is SUPERFOOD. That’s because pure, raw cacao is one of the healthiest things you can eat, and seriously skyrockets your health!
It contains flavonoids and antioxidants that give it many long-lasting benefits.
What is Raw Cacao? (hint: it's NOT Cocoa)
Cacao comes from a plant. Though it was once only grown in Central and South America, it's now grown all over the world. Much of it comes from Africa.
A single cacao plant can yield about 80,000 cacao beans each year. These beans are the seeds that are found in the pods of the cacao tree.
Cacao is what chocolate is made from. That’s why we tend not to think of it as a health food. It’s also what cocoa is made from.
Cocoa is made when the product inside of the cacao beans are crushed and ground into a paste. The paste is then dried into cocoa powder.
Before cacao nibs are processed into cocoa or mixed with sugar and other additives to make candy bars, it is a pure food. Unprocessed cacao has many different compounds that are good for you.
Top 10 Reasons to Eat Raw Cacao
1. It makes you happy! Cacao contains anandamide which is also called the “Bliss Molecule.” This chemical that has the same makeup as THC. It makes you feel happier and boosts your energy levels.
2. Cacao perks you up. It offers theobromine which has the same components as caffeine. It boosts your energy and makes you feel more awake.
3. Fights depression. Cacao has something called phenethylamine in it. Your body turns this compound into the good mood hormone known as serotonin. Some people take prescription drugs to boost serotonin as a way to help with depression.
4. It's great for your “ticker.” Cacao’s flavonoids help fight heart disease. It does this by fixing the damage caused by free radicals.
5. Battles high blood pressure. The flavonoids found in cacao help to lower your blood pressure.
6. All natural blood thinner. Cacao contains elements that help to prevent the risk of blood clots.
7. Stabilizes blood sugar levels. Studies have shown that cacao can help people who have diabetes. It does this by lowering blood glucose and boosting insulin function.
8. Cacao is one of the world’s top sources of antioxidants. It helps the body get rid of free radicals that can lead to cancer.
9. Protects your brain health. Cacao has been shown to help boost blood flow to the brain. Scientists believe it may help to fend off the effects of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. It may also help heal some of the harm caused by stroke.
10. Improves your memory. People who eat pure raw cacao score better on memory tests and cognitive tests.
Choose Cacao over Cocoa
Unfortunately, most of the incredible nutrients found in cacao get cooked away during the roasting process that brings it to market as cocoa or chocolate. That’s because when cacao beans are heated to a temperature of 120 degrees, the nutrients start evaporating.
The best way to dry cacao beans to make them edible is the traditional method of roasting them in the sun.
I love it so much that I've sourced the purest sun-kissed raw cacao so I can share it with the world! You can try it by clicking here.
P.S. Please share this with your chocolate-loving friends and I love reading your comments below. Did you realize raw cacao is a healthier alternative to milk chocolate?