By Mike Adams, February 3, 2009
New research published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences describes a rare find: One-thousand-year-old evidence of chocolate (theobromine cacao) being used by indigenous populations in what is now the Southwest region of the United States. Specifically, traces of chocolate were found on pottery shards discovered in Pueblo Bonito in Chaco Canyon located in New Mexico.
The shards are reportedly from cylinder jars about 10 inches tall and 4 inches in diameter. Only 200 jars have ever been found in North America, almost all of which are from Pueblo Bonito. The mainstream media is concluding that the jars are evidence of the ritualistic use of chocolate, but almost no one is pointing out the far more obvious application: The medicinal use of cacao.
Cacao has been used medicinally for thousands of years throughout Central and South America. Aside from its anti-cancer properties, chocolate is a powerful bitter herbal medicine that supports healthy liver function and brain function. It elevates the mood to such an extent that the very name -- theobromine -- takes its meaning from the Latin root "theo" meaning God-like. In many ways, the medicinal use of cacao cannot be separate from its ritualistic use, since rituals by the indigenous people who used cacao were often medicinal or healing in nature.
Most chocolate consumed in North America today is devoid of the majority of the natural alkaloids that make real cacao a powerful medicine. Thus, nearly everyone who eats chocolate today (aside from raw foodies) mistakenly thinks they've tried chocolate, when in reality they've only consumed chocolate-flavored sugar-and-milkfat treats that have been misnamed "chocolate."
If you want to try the same chocolate that was used medicinally by
Mesoamericans for thousands of years, try the raw cacao nibs from those
companies, or visit a place like Peru and get it fresh.