Who can resist a cup of hot cacao (or hot cocoa if cacao isn't available where you live)? Cocoa drinks can evoke childhood memories or soothe our mood during downtime.
Like an emotional hug, it releases neurotransmitters like tryptophan (later converted into serotonin) to make you feel warm, joyful, and cozy. It also reduces pain and stress as a nervine. When you need a mood lift, a cup of hot cacao would be a smart choice if your body works well with polyphenols.
(Some autistic and adhd kids might have a harder time with polyphenols and experience migraine, headache, nosebleed after intake of coffee, green tea, or chocolate)
In addition, we incorporate lion's mane mushrooms into our drinks. This mushroom might have been a buzz word in the wellness world in the last couple of years, however, it's been in our daily living as well as traditional medicines for more than 2000 years.
In Chinese, the lion's mane mushroom is called Hou Tou Gu (Monkey Head Mushroom) which could be found growing on many different tree species in the wild before agricultural cultivation. For centuries, it has been used as a tonic to support overall health and longevity.
Families in southern China (or Chinese descent in Asia) use it in soup to enhance brain power and heighten overall focus. It's not uncommon to see it on the dining table when it comes close to exam seasons for kids or big meetings for adults!
We love this hot cacao for its nerve calming and cognitive boosting qualities without adding sugar or dairy.
OTHER GOODIES IN THE MUG
¼ cup Raw cacao powder (or unsweetened cocoa powder)*
¼ cup Xylitol (or monk fruit sweetener)**
1 teaspoon Lion's Mane powder***
⅓ cup Water
4 cups Hemp Milk (macadamia or almond milk)
1 teaspoon Vanilla extract
Few petals Edible flowers
- In a medium saucepan, combine the cacao powder, xylitol (or sweetener), lion's mane powder, and water over medium heat.
- Stir constantly until smooth and bring to a simmer.
- Reduce the heat, mix in the milk and vanilla extract while stirring. (Do not boil!)
- Remove from heat and pour into cups.
- Garnish with edible flowers.
- Take a sip and enjoy!
* If you are unable to metabolize or process polyphenols, please skip cacao or cocoa. You can replace it with 1 teaspoon cinnamon powder.
** The amount of xylitol you use depends on your preference
*** The volume of lion's mane can be different when it comes to dietary grade vs medicinal grade. For finding the right formula for you, it is always a good idea to start small and consult your doctor, an experienced herbalist, or mushroom expert.