WHAT IS CACAO
Theobroma cacao is often referred to by its common name cacao or cocoa. This amazing tree produces a fruit called pods, which is where the cacao bean is found. To make cacao, these pods are hand-picked and cracked open to harvest the raw cacao beans inside.
Cacao can refer to the various food products which are made from the pods, including Cacao nibs, butter, paste or powder. The processing of the Cacao bean, will turn it into either Cacao or Cocoa. Raw Cacao is made by cold pressing, the un-roasted cacao bean, which removes the cacao butter. Where as Cocoa is formed from a different process, which involves roasting the pods at high temperatures, changing the molecular structure and therefore, altering the nutritional value of the bean and reducing the antioxidant and flavonol content. This processing was originally developed to reduce the bitterness of the cacao, ensuring a softer, less bitter flavour, but unfortunately it takes away many health benefits at the same time. Less processing and heating will result in higher antioxidant content and greater overall nutritional value.
Health benefits of Cacao
Not only does raw organic cacao taste amazing, but studies have shown that Cacao offers a huge range of nutrients and health benefits. Cacao helps protect your cells and offers a great source of serotonin and dopamine, which help alleviate depression and stabilise mood.
It is rich in Flavonoids and offers higher levels of antioxidants than Goji Berries! It is also rich in minerals such as Magnesium. When people are Magnesium deficient, they can often crave chocolate as they unconsciously try and increase their magnesium intake. The trick with this craving, is to go for the darker chocolate to ensure you are getting less sugar and more of the benefits of cacao. It is also rich in Calcium, Zinc and Iron as well as a range of trace minerals.
We designed our Cacao Chai with these amazing health benefits in mind, to help satisfy your chocolate cravings, while keeping the best intentions for your health. We have combined organic and fairly traded Cacao with black tea, cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, turmeric, star anise, cloves, black pepper, and white pepper to create the perfect combination of a chai and hot chocolate. You can find this blend online. It is also available from a select range of stockists in Australia, New Zealand and Japan.