Ceremonial Cacao & Menstruation
A guest blog by Tara & Stina, of Curls & Cacao
Did you know that a woman’s experience of their menstrual cycle can potentially be enhanced with the addition of cacao? Tara and Stina from Curls and Cacao describe the connection and benefits that cacao has with their menstruation cycles in hopes that you may find the relief, connection, and a different perspective of menstruation too.
How does cacao and a woman’s cycle relate?
Tara: Cacao and menstruation cycles relate in that, in my opinion, cacao is the *natural* medicine women need to help alleviate the grueling symptoms of menstruation. With the support of cacao, women’s cycles don’t have to be dreaded. Cacao lessens the distracting symptoms, which makes it easier to experience a shift in perspective about cycles from being something women should dread to it being a powerful, sacred, transformative time for women.
Stina: A woman’s menstrual cycle is her most potent time for going within and accessing her intuition. Cacao lovingly coincides with this monthly event as the plant can also support you in opening your heart, going within, and listening to the whispers of your intuition. In my perspective, when you combine cacao with your cycle, you magnify your already intuitive capabilities and empower your ability to listen to, trust, and lead yourself.
What are benefits of cacao related to our cycle that we have experienced?
Tara: I always experience intense symptoms of menstruation including cramping, fatigue, loss of physical strength in the gym, and increased feeling of sadness or negative emotions. I recently discovered that cacao holds natural medicine to keep these symptoms to a minimum so they aren’t interfering with my day-to-day. Specifically, the high fat and theobromine, a natural stimulant, in cacao fuels my body with sustained energy to combat fatigue and loss of strength in the gym. This is so important because I experience a loss of appetite in or around my cycle, so I’m not really getting this essential fat for energy from other food sources and I don’t consume other manufactured “pre-workout” stimulants.
As if this isn’t enough, serotonin levels tend to be lower in women during cycles due to decreased serotonin producing hormones like estrogen. But, have you ever felt a spike in happiness after eating a piece of chocolate? That’s because dark chocolate contains serotonin, so I know that by consuming 100% pure cacao I’m getting the highest percentage of serotonin from any chocolate source to combat the decreased mood and emotions. It’s really made a difference in how I feel. An added bonus is that cacao is more rich than the dark chocolate you can buy in the store. It definitely satisfies and exceeds my chocolate cravings without binging on excessive amounts.
Stina: Cacao before & during my menstrual cycle has been a game changer, specifically because cacao has supported me in opening up when my body is physically shedding & releasing — a time when I need this support most. I tend to get really intense cramps and become very low energy during my cycle. I’ve found that working with cacao on the first day of my cycle decreases the pain I’d typically expect, lifts my mood, and allows me to be more comfortable throughout my cycle.
I have always had pretty low Iron levels, especially during my cycle. So, I was delighted to find out that cacao is has one of the highest iron-levels of any plant. The bliss-inducing natural compounds that cacao provides are also really supportive for bringing me out of my inevitable mood swings while PMSing.
What is your personal experience (or history?) with cacao and your cycle?
Tara: It’s been about four months since I first discovered the relationship between cacao and my cycle. Before that I was consuming cacao as part of meditation or ceremony or on occasions when I just felt like a morning cup of cacao instead of coffee. On the morning the light bulb turned on for me (that cacao is menstruation medicine), I woke up and my first thought was to make a cup of cacao. It was as if someone was yelling at me to do it. I wasn’t sure why and it really wasn’t part of my regular routine, but I listened to the intuitive instruction. Shortly after, I got my period and I realized I was meant to make the connection between the cacao and my cycle. I can honestly tell you, that morning wasn’t my typical morning on my first day of a cycle. I felt energized and I sipped my warm cup of cacao which helped soothe my cramping to a level where I wasn’t glued to my bed in pain. I’m convinced that cacao has been the menstruation medicine I needed.
Stina: I’ve been working with cacao for a little over a year now but it’s as if I’ve known the plant for lifetimes. Like Tara, introducing cacao as a regular support system during my cycle was initially received as an intuitive hit. It’s as if my body recognized & registered the amazing benefits—even when just journeying with the plant ceremonially—and sent me loving nudges to work with cacao during my cycle as well.
I find that my inner knowing is sharper and I am more energized & graceful during my cycle with cacao than I am without. Cacao has supported me in becoming more accepting of my cycle while also giving myself a nourishing treat to look forward to. Our bodies are powerful communicators, especially during our cycles. I am grateful that cacao helps nurture that.
We think you should try cacao with your cycle if you:
- Find yourself low on energy during your cycle
- Are looking for a coffee alternative
- Want to go deeper with your intuition during your cycle
- Want to increase your mood and limit negative emotions
- Are looking to shift your perspective of menstrual cycles to something positive and beneficial
Bio: We are Tara & Stina from Curls & Cacao, a YouTube channel where we share conscious conversation & content over a cup of cacao. Together we are best friends and apart we are support systems for people on their own personal development journeys. Tara is a Health Coach & Personal Trainer and Stina creates courses on Soul Connection & Self-Expression. From wellness to spirituality, we love to infuse our personal journeys into conscious content that reflects the many ends of the human experience.