Cacao [ka-KOW] is the bean from which all chocolate is made and is possibly the most popular, the most celebrated, the most sought-after super food in the world for its unique flavour, texture, versatility, and health-giving properties. All Earth Notions cacao products are of the Criollo cacao bean variety-a premium variety from South America referred to as 'fine' or 'flavour' cacao-unlike the Forastero bean known as the 'ordinary' bean cultivated in West Africa for the purposes of mass production (and about 90% of the world's supply.)
The science behind raw cacao is impressive:
- The highest-ranking food in polyphenol content. These flavanoids, protect cardio health by lowering blood pressure, lowering bad cholesterol (LDL) and lowering the risk of atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), in part, by having an aspirin-like effect on the blood that keeps it thin and flowing freely.
- High in mood-boosting chemicals that make us happy. Eating raw cacao raises our serotonin levels which positively influences our mood, behaviour, sleep, learning ability, and memory. It's an endorphin-booster too reducing stress levels to keep us calm and focused, while its "bliss chemical" (a.k.a. anandamide) works as a mild anti-depressant to keep us engaged and feeling fine.
- An exceptional source of antioxidants, magnesium and copper. Raw cacao has been found to offer the highest amount of antioxidants than any other known food-which means improved protection against free radical damage. Magnesium helps maintain normal nerve and muscle function, helps strengthen bones, helps regulate blood glucose levels, and also helps produce energy and protein. Copper (a mineral many of us lack) is vital to collagen production and in maintaining bone and tissue integrity. Cacao also provides us with calcium, sulphur, iron, zinc, potassium, oleic acid, fibre, B vitamins, vitamins E, K, and trace amounts of vitamins A and C.
Cacao is a nutritionally rich food that is naturally high in fat and therefore, calories; so, it's best eaten in moderation as part of a balanced diet and healthy lifestyle.
The rule of thumb to eating cacao products is the higher the cacao value, the more nutrition you'll get. Aside from our cacao butter which is devoid of cacao solids, the cacao value of all our products is 100%.