Cocoa comes from the cocoa bean, the dried and fully fermented fatty seed of Theobroma Cacao. It is produced similarly to Cacao except cocoa undergoes a higher temperature of heat during the processing stage. 'Theobroma' (the Latin name for cocoa) means 'the Food of the Gods' and in its earliest forms, cocoa was consumed by the Mayans as a ritual beverage that was shared throughout the tribe during a marriage ceremony. By the mid-1600s, this Hot Beverage had gained widespread popularity throughout most of Europe.
When in its purest form, cocoa powder is thought to contain small traces of protein and rich sources of fibre and Antioxidants. A study at the Cornell University in New York conducted by Professor Chang Yong Lee showed that the antioxidant concentration in hot cocoa was almost as strong as red wine and 2-3 times stronger than Green Tea and Black Tea. It was also shown to contain the essential Minerals of Calcium and Potassium and thought to increase blood flow.
Cocoa has long been an ingredient in many foods however it has a long history of use as a traditional remedy too. It is said that cocoa was once used (and in some remote places, still is) as an expectorant for lung congestion and as a treatment for diarrhoea.