This heart-healthy Herbal Hot Chocolate Recipe is as nutritious as it is delicious!

You certainly don't have to feel guilty about this special treat! 🙂 Cacao is well known for its cardiac benefits, but this hot chocolate has even more surprising ingredients like turmeric, ginger, & cayenne pepper (just a little bit ‘o spicy!), to give it just the right kick!

Since dealing with pregnancy-induced hypertension and preeclampsia, coupled with many years of being overweight and over-stressed, I have struggled with keeping my blood pressure regulated. For those of you who struggle with this also, I'm sure you know how frustrating it can be!

I have been on a constant hunt for more sustainable and natural ways to keep hypertension in check and reduce my risk of developing cardiovascular disease. As you can imagine… this recipe has been close to my heart (pun intended 😉 ), and I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!

Why is this herbal hot chocolate “Heart Healthy”? 

Cacao

Raw cacao (not to be confused with “cocoa”) has been well studied for its cardiac benefits. Among its numerous other health benefits, consistent consumption of raw cacao powder has been shown to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease (source) & reduce systemic inflammation (including inflammation causing hypertension).

Scientists know that cocoa contains compounds called flavanols, thought to be responsible for the formation of nitric oxide in the body. Nitric oxide causes blood vessel walls to relax and open wider, thereby reducing blood pressure. (source)

Cacao is also a good source of many other helpful minerals for maintaining cardiac health including magnesium, potassium, calcium, copper and manganese.

Turmeric

Turmeric has so many wonderful health benefits (learn more here), and is known for its anti-inflammatory & antioxidant properties which are important in the prevention of heart disease. Studies have shown that curcumin (the most active component in turmeric) may prevent heart disease & arrhythmias. (source) Turmeric also acts as a blood thinner, which can reduce the risk of blood clots and stroke.

Ginger

Ginger supports good circulation, may help to lower cholesterol, and has been shown to help lower high blood pressure and keep the blood flowing to prevent blood clots. (source) It's also a wonderful immune-supporting herb!

Cinnamon

I personally think that cinnamon is one of the most understated spices out there. It has so many varied and valuable benefits, including regulation of blood sugar, anti-clotting factors, antimicrobial properties, brain function improvement, & of course, for our purposes here… is a beneficial source of manganese, fiber, & calcium, potentially resulting in lowered cholesterol levels and prevention of heart disease. (source)

Cayenne Pepper

Capsicum (cayenne pepper) can be used to improve poor circulation (including clotting factors) & high cholesterol (source). It's also been shown to offer relief to patients suffering from angina (chest pain caused by cardiovascular problems). Cayenne has natural vasodilatory (blood vessel dilating) properties that go to the heart of angina issues. (source) Interestingly, people in cultures that consume large quantities of chili peppers show a decreased risk of heart attack, stroke, and pulmonary embolism. (source)

Almonds

Studies have shown that consuming almonds can significantly reduce coronary heart disease risk factors, probably in part because of the nonfat (protein and fiber) and monounsaturated fatty acid components of the nut. (source) Almond milk is also a good source of potassium and vitamins A, D, & B12, which can aid in reduction of the development of heart disease & arrhythmias.

Heart-Healthy Herbal Hot Chocolate

Ingredients

Instructions

1. Bring almond milk to a very low simmer on medium heat, then reduce heat slightly.
2. Add in cacao powder & collagen hydrolysate (if using), and stir until well dissolved.
3. Stir in turmeric, ginger, cinnamon, vanilla, & cayenne pepper (Just a pinch).
4. Allow to cool slightly before adding honey.
5. Sip slowly while taking in the healthy deliciousness!

 


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  1. Oh my gosh. Afternoon chocolate craving is calling for this. I need to stock my pantry with these goodies so I can make it! I think I have everything except the cacao and cayenne!

  2. Oh my gosh. Afternoon chocolate craving is calling for this. I need to stock my pantry with these goodies so I can make it! I think I have everything except the cacao and cayenne!

  3. Hi Sarah

    My first time here at the site! I have to get on my soapbox here, cuz, it’s been a journey for me too with the heart. Lyme disease was what damaged my heart, so I needed to find out a way to restore health as much as I could. The cardiologist I saw did all sort of tests including the nuclear stress test (that I just found out causes cancer from the injection of trash they put in the veins so they can make images of the heart). In the end, there was nothing they could do for my high/low blood pressure swings and Ectopic Supra Ventricular Tachycardia. Everyone’s needs are so unique, but, these things may help you and others. Delving into research, I found that magnesium is so vital to the heart (and so much more), but due to the gastrointestinal issues taking it by mouth causes (although I still take 300mg/day by mouth), soaking in magnesium chloride (I can get you a website where I buy mine…I have no affiliation with them) has been a game changer for my heart health as well as the cayenne pepper you mention. I buy bulk cayenne and put it in capsules (big savings); take two capsules, 3 to 4 times a day (this amounts to about 1 1/2 to 2 tsp a day) and Hawthorne berry syrup (1/2 tsp/3X a day). If you’re interested in more info, you now have my email addy.

    1. Hi Teri, thank you for sharing your story and perspective with us! I’m so sorry to hear of your struggles, what a roller coaster! I totally agree with you that magnesium is vital for heart health and overall wellness!! I know there are so many out there that are mag deficient, and it is such a simple fix. I personally take two different kinds internally, and we do topical magnesium as well. It has been a game changer for us! I use both Natural Calm & another “Mega-Mag” Trace Minerals liquid supplement daily. We use Ancient Minerals flakes for “Mag Baths” (as we lovingly call them) and for their magnesium oil to apply topically. It is quite amazing how much of a difference it has made! Curious about the Hawthorne berry syrup, I haven’t heard of that, will have to look into it 🙂 Thank you again for reading and commenting!

  4. Hi Sarah

    My first time here at the site! I have to get on my soapbox here, cuz, it’s been a journey for me too with the heart. Lyme disease was what damaged my heart, so I needed to find out a way to restore health as much as I could. The cardiologist I saw did all sort of tests including the nuclear stress test (that I just found out causes cancer from the injection of trash they put in the veins so they can make images of the heart). In the end, there was nothing they could do for my high/low blood pressure swings and Ectopic Supra Ventricular Tachycardia. Everyone’s needs are so unique, but, these things may help you and others. Delving into research, I found that magnesium is so vital to the heart (and so much more), but due to the gastrointestinal issues taking it by mouth causes (although I still take 300mg/day by mouth), soaking in magnesium chloride (I can get you a website where I buy mine…I have no affiliation with them) has been a game changer for my heart health as well as the cayenne pepper you mention. I buy bulk cayenne and put it in capsules (big savings); take two capsules, 3 to 4 times a day (this amounts to about 1 1/2 to 2 tsp a day) and Hawthorne berry syrup (1/2 tsp/3X a day). If you’re interested in more info, you now have my email addy.

    1. Hi Teri, thank you for sharing your story and perspective with us! I’m so sorry to hear of your struggles, what a roller coaster! I totally agree with you that magnesium is vital for heart health and overall wellness!! I know there are so many out there that are mag deficient, and it is such a simple fix. I personally take two different kinds internally, and we do topical magnesium as well. It has been a game changer for us! I use both Natural Calm & another “Mega-Mag” Trace Minerals liquid supplement daily. We use Ancient Minerals flakes for “Mag Baths” (as we lovingly call them) and for their magnesium oil to apply topically. It is quite amazing how much of a difference it has made! Curious about the Hawthorne berry syrup, I haven’t heard of that, will have to look into it 🙂 Thank you again for reading and commenting!

  5. I just came across your recipe through Pinterest yesterday & tried it last night. I loved it! I was hoping to make it in bulk for the week, do you think the benefits will hold up? Or should it be made fresh each day?

  6. I just came across your recipe through Pinterest yesterday & tried it last night. I loved it! I was hoping to make it in bulk for the week, do you think the benefits will hold up? Or should it be made fresh each day?

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