Better mood through cacao
Many ceremonial cacao lovers report a notable impact on their mood. There is substantial science that explains why ceremonial cacao is so beneficial. Pure cacao contains beneficial neurotransmitters and neuro-modulators already present in our brain. It also contains reuptake inhibitors that block the pathways that our bodies normally use to break down and recycle these beneficial mood altering molecules, so the good mood lasts for longer. In the long term, regularly working with ceremonial cacao can have therapeutic health benefits, including creating new neural pathways that change our daily experience to include more joy, love, and connection.
Top Molecules in Cacao
Some of the top mood altering molecules in cacao include:
Anandamide is commonly referred to as the bliss molecule, and is associated with the runner’s high effect. It is actually the first endocannabinoid to be discovered, and it is well known for moderating pain. Cacao also has N-linoleoylethanolamine, which is the reuptake inhibitor for anandamide.
Phenylethylamine (PEA) - Helps with excitement, alertness, attention. Gives the perception of time slowing down.
Serotonin - Helps with wellbeing, and creates resistance to stress. Cacao also has MOA inhibitors that inhibit reuptake of serotonin.
Dopamine - Gives feelings of motivation and pleasure. Cacao also has MOA inhibitors that inhibit reuptake of dopamine.
Due to these molecules and many others, when you drink ceremonial cacao you may feel expansive, blissful, connected to self and/or others, inspired, connected to your intuition & vision, connected to spirit, grounded, emotions arise, and the movement of stuck energy. You can also experience increased blood flow, mood elevation, and a more expanded state of consciousness. Cacao is a vasodilator, meaning your blood vessels and muscular systems relax. When working with ceremonial doses of cacao, blood flow can increase by up to 30%, meaning that more blood (life force energy) is moving through your body and nourishing all of your systems.
Long Term Neural Pathway Benefits
Working with cacao regularly can result in long term beneficial changes in brain function, primarily through the reinforcement of neural pathways that include more joy, love, presence, and connection. There is ample evidence for the neuroplasticity of the human brain, and regularly ingesting cacao with all of its beneficial neuromodulators and correlated reuptake inhibitors could have long term impact on dominant neural pathways.
Our founder Jonas consumes ceremonial cacao on the regular and has done so for nearly a decade. In this time he has logged dozens of occurrences of elevated consciousness not induced by cacao or any other input, but extraordinarily similar in nature to his experiences with cacao. Based on these correlations, he believes that ceremonial cacao is a guide, showing our brains how to produce states of elevated consciousness and functioning, even without the ingestion of cacao. This is clearly anecdotal, and we strongly believe more long term studies are needed on the myriad health benefits of regular ceremonial cacao consumption.
Benefits as an Antidepressant
We believe cacao has potential as a holistic therapy for depression, and we have encountered the effects of cacao during depressive episodes to be uplifting and stabilizing. It is our sincere hope that someday cacao could become a part of a clinically proven method for treating depression naturally, or as a method for assisting people in reducing their dependence on powerful pharmaceuticals.
Because cacao is contraindicated with SSRIs, many people struggling with depression cannot take cacao because of the SSRI’s they are medicating with. There is potential that people may be able to partially reduce their SSRI medication intake and supplement with ceremonial cacao, however medical studies on this need to be done to establish a verifiable protocol. If you are a medical practitioner and would like to collaborate with us on such a study, please let us know! Because pharmaceutical SSRIs have many side effects and ceremonial cacao is beneficial in so many other ways, we are hopeful that such a protocol would greatly benefit the lives of many people struggling with depression and other mood disorders.