If you've been to a yoga or meditation studio lately, you've probably come across the buzz about cacao ceremonies which are becoming increasingly popular.
Whether you’re a chocolate lover or not, you have to admit that the name itself is quite tempting.
But what are cacao ceremonies about, really?
Originating from indigenous cultures in Central and South America, cacao ceremonies are a unique way to connect with yourself and others – while drinking a delicious cacao drink. The drink contains raw cacao, which is a type of chocolate made from unprocessed and organic cacao beans or raw cacao solids or powder.
During the ceremony, you'll have the chance to meditate, set intentions and connect with your inner insight.
The ceremony often involves a guided meditation or ceremony led by an instructor, who will set an intention for the ceremony and create a safe and supportive space for participants to connect with themselves and each other. The ceremony's goal is to create a space for individuals to connect with their inner wisdom, experience profound healing and develop deeper relationships with themselves.
How will ceremonial cacao make me feel?
Unlike coffee's high caffeine content that can make you feel wired and a bit jumpy, cacao is rich in theobromine that stimulates your heart and gives you a restful yet alert state of mind. Small amounts of raw cacao will make you feel calm, while a ceremonial dose of 40g can send you on a euphoric journey filled with joy.
The sensation is often referred to as ‘heart-opening’, similar to what you feel when experiencing a stunning sunset or any special moment in life that brings you the utmost happiness.
When it comes to ceremonial cacao, it's all about finding the sweet spot. Too little and you might not feel a thing, but too much and you might end up feeling no that well.
So, how much cacao is enough for you to feel something?
The ceremonial dose of 42.5 grams of shaved cacao paste is usually enough to give you the pure cacao bliss you’ve been longing for.
How long does the effect of cacao last?
For most people, it only takes 20-30 minutes to start feeling the glorious effect of cacao. And the bliss doesn't end immediately as the feeling of cacao delight can last anywhere from two to four hours depending on the dose and how your body reacts.
When should I not drink cacao?
In essence, and just like any other ingredient, ceremonial cacao should be consumed in moderation. It is better to not exceed a dose of 55 grams as higher doses can result in undesirable effects such as headaches, sweating, nausea and even heart palpitations in some individuals.
If you are on antidepressants, have a heart condition or take medication for hypertension, it is strongly recommended to consult with a doctor before consuming ceremonial cacao.