WHAT IS CACAO?
Cacao is a broad term — many companies will claim the use of “cacao” despite not living up to the same criteria as others. CoKo Lounge uses raw cacao that has had traditional low heat artisanal processing, from the bean pod to the final product. This criterion includes minimal fermenting and roasting to retain all the fragile bioactive components. Giving you an enriched cacao experience far beyond the familiar chocolate flavour.
Cacao grows in a large pod, within this pod is a fleshy white fruit with large seeds that we know as coco beans. These are harvested and processed in different ways to create final products. Coco beans are first fermented, then roasted. After this, they are crushed into nibs, and melted to create a paste mass that is half cacao butter and half cacao solids. This product, referred to as cacao liquor is often then compressed to separate the butter from the solids. This is how cacao powder is produced. The powder when recombined with the butter and sugar in different ratios and processed with special machines creates what we know as chocolate.
Our highly bioactive raw cacao drink mixes minimise heating and handling processes to bring a raw product to you that has been passed through as few hands as possible resulting in an authentically healthy superfood, free from adulteration.
WHY WOULD I CHOOSE RAW CACAO OVER COCOA?
Chemically, cocoa is vastly different from its less processed counterpart. Cocoa is “Dutch Roasted” cacao, undergoing industrial processing and chemical changes. Making household and candy cocoa involves long roasting of the beans to create strong bitter flavours that when mixed with sugar create the chocolate taste commonly known in the modern world. In contrast, CoKo’s top cacao cultivars create minimally processed raw mass that is not so bitter and can be eaten without the addition of sugar – as it is flavourfully and bioactively vastly more complex and naturally ‘sweeter’.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF CACAO?
Cacao boasts many, almost unbelievable, benefits for human nutrition and health. Some of these are:
- highest plant-based source of iron
- greatest source of antioxidants
- balancing of our “feel-good” hormones – Serotonin, Dopamine and Anandamide
- reduction of inflammation
- improvement of respiratory function
- countering of fatigue
- mitigation of anxiety
- relaxation of habitual tensions
Cacao studies also indicate that it may increase stem cell count by up to 2x when ingested twice a day for a month, genuinely supports immune system functions and is a great aphrodisiac!
HOW IS IT DIFFERENT FROM OTHERS?
CoKo Lounge’s specific processing methods and understanding of bioactive compounds allows us to enhance the bioavailability of the rich compounds in cacao. A shorter ferment and minimal roasting allows for less breakdown of bio-active compounds and preservation of cacao’s rich, nutrient dense compounds.
Criollo cacao is a cultivar variety that was bred by the ancient civilizations of Meso America from 1300 BC to the culture’s discovery by Spanish explorers. This variant was popularized because of its natural sweetness and was thought of as the apex of cacao – fed to kings and royalty.
HOW DOES IT MAKE ME FEEL?
CoKo Elixers have been described as a heart opening experience by many consumers. This is because of their bioactive compounds such as theobromine, anandamide, serotonin, dopamine and other hormones, polyphenols and terpenes. These all work in tandem to aid your body in creating a warm fuzzy feeling mixed with an undeniable sense of happiness and optimism.
Cacao is a unique plant in the fact that it is a part of a small, select group of species that contains phyto-cannabinoids that are existent outside of the cannabis plant, one such being anandamide.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
The bioactive compounds allow for production and release of neurochemicals in the brain that are produced naturally, so as to not shock the system.
A unique property of cacao is the presence of MAO inhibitors which prevent the breakdown of neurochemicals in the brain, allowing for a longer lasting feeling of the cacao bioactives. This helps the body increase levels of serotonin and dopamine in a safe, sustainable way. This is part of the reason chocolate is the first thing reached for when you’re feeling down.
Anandamide is an interesting compound known as the bliss chemical. It replicates feelings of love and gives life to the cacao heart-opening experience. It’s also why chocolate is given out during Valentine’s Day.
WHAT’S THE HISTORY OF CACAO?
Traditionally, cacao was a centre-point of many Central and South American cultures. It was used as a currency, food source and a symbol of wealth. Many rituals and practices were based around the consumption of cacao in the form of a hot, frothy drink. It was also treated as a medicine as it aids healing and supports immune system function. Cacao’s scientific name is Theobroma Cacao translating to “drink of the gods”. This referred to its status among people.
There are many myths surrounding cacao. It was even referred to as the origin of the gods, as depictions show gods bloodletting into cacao to create offspring and thus, gods being born from it.
WHY CHOOSE COKO?
CoKo Lounge combines the science of superfood bioactives and traditional cultivation practices to enhance cacao and return its ancient magic to modern folk. CoKo Elixers truly enhance one’s quality of life with every drink.