Chocolate, Cacao, CBD, Bliss Molecules

Posted by Bronwyn Beatta, Derek Van Atta on 14th Feb 2019

Liberate Your Life in a New Way with Chocolate!

cacao pod

Deeply-seated in the richness of health and happiness, lies the cacao bean. This magical, mystical superfood in its pure, raw form can transform your life. Keep reading to learn more!

Did you know?

  • Cacao contains at least 21% protein by weight, which exceeds full fat beef!
  • The cacao bean is not a bean. It's actually a lovely seed inside of the cacao fruit pod surrounded by beautiful white colored "flesh" of cacao fruit.
  • Cacao is the most unique food found anywhere on Earth because of it's amazing nutritional and molecular profile. It contains over 300 different phyto-nutrients, including the rare and wonderful PEA and Anandamine molecules!
  • There is no other food or spice that has the unique ability to elevate the mood of all humans via its unique effect on the functioning of the brain and nervous system, especially your CB-1 receptors.
  • Cacao ranks in the top five foods for getting your daily requirements of magnesium, which most of the population is deficient in. And the magnesium in cacao is more easily absorbed by your body than any supplement because of the the excellent co-factors also present in cacao.

No more guilt about Chocolate. The human ego will do anything to get attention, even if it means getting negative attention. And therefore feeling guilty is one of the ego's favorite ways to ruin a good thing. When we do something that is actually wrong, and know it, "guilt" can be a healthy tool to help us apologize to those we impacted and then move on. But more often, our ego's use "false-guilt" as a way to draw attention to what we think are our inadequacies. When it comes to eating and feeling guilty, chocolate can rank higher than any other food. Let's all shift into a healthier mindset by being in total harmony in all aspects of our bodies, minds, and spirits!  Especially during the holidays! And if possible, every day!

Junk Chocolate vs Superfood Cacao

Let's talk about how you can know the difference between good chocolate and junk chocolate, how to eat it without shame, and how to fully utilize the benefits of this "Food of the Gods" for your own personal emancipation.

Here are some tips for eating healthier chocolate:

  • Upgrade from "dirty chocolate" to "clean cacao." 
  • Go for less heavily roasted, and more raw cacao chocolate. 
  • Lean towards organic, fair trade cacao, which is more delicious and nutritious!
  • Enjoy cacao with the least sugar possible. Aim for healthy sweeteners like maple syrup. Or better yet, monk fruit or stevia so that the actual sugar content can be minimal and therefore better for your blood sugar etc.

Eat the Best Chocolate or None.

When you eat good quality chocolate (versus chocolates that are over-processed and full of refined sugars and dairy), you're doing your body a favor. There's less "junk" for you to process. And you're also doing other people in the world a favor. How? By promoting organic farming and fair trade practices around the globe. 

Wait, won't that cost three times as much? Not really. If you're already purchasing decent chocolate, then you'll only be paying a little more for exquisite fair trade and organic cacao. And you'll be happier knowing that you're no longer supporting some of the worst actors in developing countries.

Gratitude Attitude. Please have a happy attitude full of gratitude for the cacao you're purchasing and the people who brought it to you, and watch your guilt melt away!

Quick Reminder! Beware of cocoa versus cacao! When seeking the highest benefits of chocolate, eat only true cacao and not heavily altered cocoa. Always remember it's the one that is spelled with the "o" at the end of the word. We like to say "O goodie, Cacao." Remember that cocoa starts out as cacao, but is heated at much higher temperatures and is ruined further by a chemical process with alkali. Unfortunately, this process strips cacao of many of the nutritional benefits we all want and deserve.

Pair Chocolate With Natural Food

There's no denying it: chocolate is pretty amazing on its own. When we see chocolate added to other things, it tends to be with a pastry, cookie, or in a cake. If it's with fruit, especially wrapped in plastic, there's usually extra sugar included that unnecessarily spikes the "junk factor" of the chocolate and the fruit. 

So take the opportunity to enjoy freshly cut fruit dipped in a warm, healthy cacao spread. You can do this by warming up some Sarvaa Elixir (we recommend Alive Elixir because of its complementary-tasting superfoods such as Acerola Cherries, Camu Camu Berries, Rose Hips, Pomegranate, and Blueberries).

Healthy Chocolate Recipe. This is an easy, delicious, simple, healthy chocolate dip or spread.

  • In a medium size bowl, combine...
  • 1 cup organic, fair-trade cacao powder.
  • 1/2 teaspoon organic monk fruit powder or 1/4 tsp of stevia (to taste)
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup organic melted coconut oil depending on your preference
  • Optional: Pinch of sea salt, cinnamon, vanilla, or cardamom.
  • (Makes about a cup.)

...Whip it up by hand or in your food processor, and voila! Chocolatey goodness ready to drizzle over your favorite fruits, breakfasts, and smoothies!

Too Buzzy Sometimes?

Have you ever noticed that chocolate can get you jazzed up? In the good way with a heightened, better mood? But have you also found that at certain times you were too buzzy or a bit hyper if you eat too much? Why is this? If there's a fair amount of sugar in your chocolate, then there's probably a blood sugar spike happening. 

However, if you are eating raw cacao or very dark chocolate with little sugar in it, and you still feel really buzzed, know that there's a combination of factors that you can work with and perhaps modify.

First off, remember that cacao is a potent superfood within itself and is boosting your immune system, your nervous system, and the neurotransmitters in your brain! Not only is cacao full of minerals, vitamins, fiber, antioxidants, essential fatty acids, and even Vitamin C, it's also rich in naturally-occurring phyto-nutrients called Anandamide and phenylethylamine or PEA.

In addition to all the above factors there's also the fact that cacao contains a little bit of theanine, caffeine, and theobromine, which are all natural stimulants. But unlike tea and coffee, cacao contains large amounts of macro-nutrients to moderate the stimulating components. And don't forget that cacao contains at least 21% protein, excellent quantities of fiber and healthy fats that all help to create the one of the healthiest foods on Earth!

Sensitive People. If you're especially sensitive to the stimulating aspects of cacao, then please read further to discover the synergistic benefits of including adaptogenic superfoods to your cacao. Especially consider adding some adaptogens such as turmeric root, maca root, ashwaganda root, burdock root, or dandelion root to your cacao.

And last but not least, read below to learn more about how CBD can be a marvelous addition to your cacao. It used to be that you had to go to a medical cannabis dispensary to find CBD and chocolate. And then it got researched even more and has proliferated into all the cannabis dispensaries, both medical and recreational. And now, you're probably seeing CBD chocolate popping up in hundreds of health food stores across the county.

Cacao, Anandamide, CBD and You!

Cacao is the only food on Earth that contains meaningful amounts of the fantastic molecule Anandamide! Often known as the "bliss chemical," we're most familiar with this neurotransmitter after we exercise, when our body naturally releases endorphins in the brain that cause us to feel good. Our bodies naturally produce Anandamide, but in this form it is easily broken down. Cacao is unique in that it not only contains amounts of Anandamide, but also has enzyme inhibitors that decrease the rate at which anandamide breaks down so that we can enjoy this benefit more fully!

Anandamide is also unique in the way it interacts with your CB-1 and CB-2 receptors. These receptors are found throughout your Endocannabinoid system and are essential for optimal health and well-being. And coincidentally, the Anandamide in cacao is similar to CBD (cannabidiol) in the way it binds to these receptors to sooth and strengthen your nervous system functioning! It even acts like some of the good aspects of THC without the bad aspects. THC easily swamps the sensitive receptors, but naturally occurring Anandamide never does. Researchers are actively studying the beneficial synergies between cacao and CBD due to the uniquely high presence of Anandamide in raw, organic cacao.

In fact Sarvaa Superfoods, founder, Derek Van Atta has been actively engaged in this type of research here in the lab at Sarvaa and we all love the results he's getting so far! And who knows, if enough of our clients want us to offer CBD infused Superfoods, then some of these experimental Superfoods might become available before too long. CBD is clearly a synergistic substance that is especially delightful and helpful to combine with cacao. This hemp-based ingredient can soothe your nervous system, relieve pain, combat anxiety, and is anti-carcinogenic. Paired up with raw cacao, the effects can be a total pleasure. For us here at Sarvaa, this pairing is one of our absolute favorites!

Powerful PEA Benefits.

Another mood boosting compound found in abundance in raw, unprocessed cacao are phenylethylamines (PEAs). A big word, but basically PEAs are a class of chemicals that our bodies produce when we fall in love. PEAs can help to heighten libido, boost energy, increase mental alertness, and improve our level of concentration. The connection between love and chocolate is no surprise, as eating chocolate enhances our ability to love and feel loved. As chocolate is heated and processed however, this amazing chemical occurs in decreased amounts.

Synergistic Herbs and Spices that Love to Love Your Chocolate 

Chocolate seems to go with most things. But what are some special things that can really make cacao more dreamy and perhaps not as buzzy? In a word, Adaptogens! These adaptogenic plants can help smooth out the "buzzy-high" of cacao. This is why Sarvaa's Mayan Chocolate meal replacement and Cacao Plus! meal replacement aren't overly stimulating. We include the terrific benefits of Adaptogens in these cacao meal replacements, not only to infuse your body with potent minerals and vitamins, but also to help you metabolize the cacao in a way so that you don't get too jumpy. 

Nootropic Benefits of Chocolate and Cacao

Nootropics is the broad term for all substances that can improve cognitive functioning in humans. Whether you're getting nootropics from teas, herbal formulas, drugs, or foods such as cacao, there are dozens of benefits that come with these substances, including creativity, motivation, and memory capacity.

In raw cacao, nootropic power is overflowing. It increases cerebral blood flow, focus, learning ability, and has the ability to reduce the chances of neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's.

My Personal Experience Using Cacao With Freedom-Inducing Experiences

First off, what do I mean by "freedom-inducing"? To me, freedom can be defined as anything where I'm comfortable to be myself despite the situation. For instance, I feel more free to be myself when I don't take others' judgments personally, and remind myself that I can't control how other people feel or what they think.

At an even deeper level, freedom-inducing experiences are about peeling away layers of fabricated actions and ways of thinking that aren't authentic to my true nature ...or to my connection with every being. 

How can cacao enable more freedom in me and you?

Here is an immediate and simple way to utilize chocolate as a step into self-knowing and liberation from others' opinions: When you put chocolate in your mouth, take it slow for the very first bite. What comes up first? Is it immediately a taste of cacao? Or is it some saltiness? And then a rush of earthiness or fruit undertones with the cacao? Or rather, before any taste comes into your consciousness, do you intuit the food's energetics? How you experience this superfood gift is a way to unravel what you think you know about yourself, and co-experience who you are with this divine plant. For example, when I tried this technique, I was greatly surprised. I see myself as a highly spiritual person (I am), but it wasn't the energetics that came to me first; it was the physical aspects of the cacao. It taught me that I'm greatly involved more on the physical plane than I wanted to admit at first. Play around! Maybe there's emotion for you. Or visuals may come up. Enjoy!

Personal Freedom in 20 seconds or less.

If you want to take cacao to the next level of your personal freedom, think about (or even write down) a short list of what you've been told to think about chocolate. How many of those ideas are negative and how many are positive? How many seem to be true, and what can you call an opinion that somebody else gave to you (even as a child) and you bought as gospel? Now contemplate a few stories that you know about yourself. How many are negative and how many are positive? What is true (so true that there is no little voice of doubt to be found) and what do you tell yourself is true but... there may be some doubts? Who planted those seeds? And when? Did you plant them yourself? Or what did you take from others without question? What comes up? What did you not know? 

When you face the stories and call them out for what they are, you can start to untangle the falsities that seem to make up "you." Untie your knots. Create a passage where there were only walls. Breathe big, deep, full breaths of You! This! Us! Connect within, and let your sensory faculties (taste, smell, touch, and 6th sense of intuition) be your guides. Be creative with how you experience this nourishing Food of the Gods!

For centuries, cacao has been used in ceremonies as an ancient medicine for those needing healing, physically and mentally. Today, cacao ceremonies are still on-going, and this raw superfood is even incorporated in group therapy sessions. It promotes lucid dreaming, enhances breath work, and helps our minds focus for ultimate creativity.

As quoted in an article by Uplift:

"Sacred Cacao was bypassed in the ‘60’s resurgence of medicine-plants because it does not act like a psychedelic – it does not take you on its trip, but facilitates your own. There are Indigenous shamans in Central and South America who prefer cacao over psychedelics, but few have heard of them. I am not here to speak for them. I speak from my years of experience with cacao and cacao ceremonies since the Cacao Spirit began sharing and partnering with me in the metaphysical work that I do..."
– Keith Wilson, the Chocolate Shaman

Cacao as Your Catalyst

With all of this knowledge in mind now, take this opportunity to explore and use chocolate for your benefit and the benefit of others. It's easy and it feels good! Shake off your guilt, lift up your spirits, and peel away unnecessary baggage into the light of a new day and a new way with the power and blessing of raw cacao!

Love Your Body! Love Everybody!