Please make sure you have read up on any contra-indications and let us know of any issues where we may need to prepare you a lower dose.

If you are taking any SSRI anti-depressants you MUST inform us so we can give you a low dose. The Tryptophan contained in the Cacao can be dangerous to those who are taking them, though anyone who is on these should already be well informed of their dietary restrictions.

It is good practice to eat only a light meal and not for 2-3 hours before ceremony so that you can be best prepared for the Cacao to do its healing work.

You will be offered a herbal tea upon arrival to help relax and soothe you (and warm you up on these cold winter’s days)

Wear lots of layers so that you can adapt to any temperature changes that may arise in you as you move, or lay down and the body adjusts to the Cacao.

It would be best to avoid Coffee and Caffeine if possible on the day, and certainly better to avoid a few hours before ceremony.

Eat light, have some fruit or a little toast before a few hours before.


  • Water bottle (there is tap water at the hall so we can refill for you as needed)
  • A Yoga Mat to lay on
  • Plenty of bolsters or cushions if your event is mainly laying down
  • A blanket
  • A favourite Journal book and pen
    (We will always have spare pens and paper if you need, but it is nicer to have your own journal).



    We consider Cacao to be a powerful medicinal plant, and as such it is important to be mindful about how you use it. If you have any current health concerns or are taking medications it is important to check that a ceremonial dose is not going to cause discomfort. It might be that you are best served by a ‘meditation’ or even ‘homeopathic’ dose, which we are happy to provide.

    Recent studies have shown Cacao to be ‘low’ in Tyramine, which is an amino acid that regulates blood pressure, so this is no longer thought to be a concern.

Anti-depressants: There has been some concern with larger doses of cacao and SSRI type anti-depressants due to the MAOI’s in cacao. Specifically, the tryptophan, a type of MAOI, which is a pre-cursor to serotonin has been cited by some as a ‘possible’ contraindication. The research about this interaction is minimal, but studies on both the amounts of tryptophan in chocolate and how that might cause ‘serotonin syndrome’ don’t indicate any problems

Serious heart conditions: Theobromine in cacao increases heart rate significantly and is a vasodilator, lowering blood pressure. If you have such a condition please inform us so we can give you a lower dose.

Pregnancy: Theobromine is a stimulant – it increases heart rate & lowers blood pressure. Some people advise avoiding it completely during pregnancy; others suggest a smaller dose. Cacao contains a tenth of the caffeine found in coffee so depending on your stance on coffee during pregnancy you may be ok with the smaller dose of cacao. Similarly, some people prefer to avoid all sources of theobromine & caffeine while they are breastfeeding. (In traditional Mayan communities, cacao is actually often given to mothers as a health tonic as it is so full of nutrients

We are happy to take into account any of these concerns and give you a lower dose – please do let us know in advance of the Cacao ceremony so we can ensure you are catered for. We measure the cacao carefully and will need to know in advance to keep your measurement in integrity.