We’re all used to seeing pictures of Hot Chocolate with Whipped Cream or Marshmallows on the top during the fall and winter. For all the right reasons we are drawn to a nice hot cup when the weather starts to get chilly. Today I wanna talk about why we should be drinking hot chocolate or pure cacao through all seasons, not just the chilly ones. I also wanted to announce my switch from Coffee over to a nice cup of Cacao. I am proud to say that I no longer drink coffee! I am free from all the side effects and society’s obsession with it.
First off, I would like to say that when I speak of the hot chocolate I have in the morning, I am not talking about store bought Abuelita’s or other types of cocoa mix that contain fillers and tons of sugar (highly processed). The hot chocolate I have is made from high quality cacao powder with minimal processing. At the end of this article I will share my personal recipe and the brands I recommend. I am also going to add the spiritual benefits of Cacao since I feel like that’s not a topic that is spoken about enough and would be great to put out.
A little history on Cacao
Before getting started let’s get into a little history! The Cacao Tree (where hot chocolate comes from) was born in the Amazons. You will find that most cacao products are coming from Peru, Ecuador, Guatemala, Nicaragua, and Columbia. I will not lie to you, part of my decision to switch over to Cacao was because of its Latin roots and its association with what I like to call my warrior ancestors. Cacao’s history comes from Mesoamerican native cultures! It was the #1 drink that the Olmec, Mayan, Incas, Toltecs, and Aztecs would have on a daily basis and was used in rituals, ceremonies, festivals and the Cacao bean was even used as currency within those cultures.It was treated as “the food of the gods”, the latin name of the cacao tree is Theobroma Cacao, meaning Theo=God, Broma= Food.
Now as much as we would like to think of Cacao as being sweet and yummy, the original drink was roasted and mixed with water, chili peppers, and cornmeal. It was rich, bitter, and thick. Far from our hot chocolate desires and I have yet to try a more traditional drink such as this one. When I do I will make sure to let you know about it!
As much as I would like to keep going with the history of Cacao, I will skip the European perspective for today and keep it native to its roots.
The Physical Benefits of Cacao
Here are just a few physical benefits of cacao for your body. Please note that there are many more to list but because I wanted to split the benefits between physical and spiritual I went ahead and added my personal favorites below.
A Mighty Antidepressant
If you are looking for a natural way to boost your mood and fight the blues then cacao might be the perfect addition to your daily intake. The mighty positive effects from cacao come from its high flavanols, high polyphenols, and theobromine content which improves blood flow to the brain and cognitive function. Some of the effects that some may mention after having a cup of hot cacao are feelings of calmness, reduced stress, and well-being.
A great plant-based source of Iron
Cacao is one of the highest plant based sources of non-heme iron, packing more iron than a piece of meat. About 3 ounces of Cacao nibs or powder contains 7 milligrams of Iron. Just make sure to eat foods with high Vitamin C content to allow the body to absorb the non-heme iron better.
Lowers Inflammation within the Body
The antioxidants found in Cacao are great for lowering inflammation within the body. How? Well antioxidants have been found to combat oxidative stress which contributes to chronic inflammation. By the way, the antioxidants found within Cacao are incredible and exceed what you may find within any berry! Because of this fact Cacao may be able to help prevent and fight off Cancer and other diseases as well.
The Spiritual Benefits of Cacao
Cacao has many gentle spiritual benefits that I wanted to make sure I add within this blog. Note that these are metaphysical or mystical in nature and are not meant to be science-based. These are coming from a sacred and spiritual view instead.
Takes your meditation deeper
Because Cacao has been known to open the heart or the heart chakra, drinking cacao can help deepen your meditation and can help us feel love, oneness, and connection with spirit.
Helps release energetic blockages
If you are struggling with limiting beliefs or energetic blockages, opening the heart with Cacao will help with release and healing from anything that is blocking our energy.
Brings Balance and Harmony
Cacao has a very gentle and peaceful way of bringing balance and harmony to the mind, body, and soul. It will encourage you to the positive side of living.
The SMW Hot Cacao Warrior Recipe
All right! Now before ending this I will add my hot cacao recipe below. It’s super easy to make, low in caffeine, and super delicious. I hope this cup of cacao opens your heart and gives you all the energy life can give you. Cheers to your health!
Ingredients you will need:
- Navitas Organic Cacao Powder
- Agave Nectar or Stevia Sweetener
- Unsweetened Almond Milk (or your preferred milk)
- Cinnamon Powder
- Vanilla Extract
Recipe for a nice hot cup of cacao (1 Serving):
- Warm up 1 Cup of Almond Milk or preferred milk in a pot under low-medium heat.
- Once the milk is warm, turn off the heat, and mix in 2 teaspoons of cacao powder.
- Once cacao powder is mixed in well, add 1-2 tablespoons of Agave to sweeten your hot cacao. Then finish off with ⅛ spoon of cinnamon powder and ¼ spoon of vanilla extract.