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Armando shows Kris th cacao friut

This is me on the left with Armando Sam who is showing me the amazing cacao fruit!

On the left,

I am with my friend the

Cacao Queen, Abelina Cho. 

Kris and Abelina Cho in Belize

They say Alzheimer’s is a “disease of civilization” and in our journey to write our cook book, THE ALZHEIMER'S TEST KITCHEN, we have traveled to an area where the author Aldous Huxley once remarked “If there was ever a far ends of the earth, this is it!”. We are in the jungles of Belize and as I write this, a howler monkey sings his ancient sad monkey blues announcing the coming rain. It is misty outside with a thousand sounds of birds, frogs and insects that makes a racket as the day begins. We have an appointment with the Mayan chocolate queen Abelina Cho and her husband Juan, who together started the first modern Mayan chocolate company named after the Mayan goddess of  cacao, IXCACAO. She is the goddess of love and fertility and sees that the people do not go hungry.

Kris’s doctor after her diagnosis with Alzheimer’s prescribed her chocolate every day. Not milk chocolate, dark chocolate as dark as you can eat.  Chocolate is a boost of serotonin, B12 and rich flavonoids that are literally brain food! Over the next week in Belize we would eat the chocolate fruit, raw beans, fermented beans and the best chocolate in the world for our research to feed our heads.


Here is a recipe that the "Chocolate Queen" has given us, when I would help the men in the village who would gather to build a house or plant, a chocolate drink was always available to keep us going!   

                                        Mayan Hot Chocolate


2 cups of fresh water

3 tablespoons of IXCACAO Handmade Chocolate Powder

Spice it up! with 1/2 teaspoon of  either or a combination of allspice, black pepper, nutmeg or chili powder.


Preparation: Simmer water on the stove for 10 minutes. Add cocoa powder and spices and simmer for 5 more minutes, stirring occasionally. 

 Serve hot anytime. Add honey or sugar to taste...less is best.  

Experiment a bit, find out what you like and tell us about it!     

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A bit about the spice...we recommend combining cinnamon and nutmeg 1/2 teaspoon each. The nutmeg because it contains both myristicin and macelignan, antioxidants that slows the effects of dementia by inhibiting free radicals and removing toxins. Cinnamon works well too and also helps to clear amyloid plaques... look for our chapter on "Your spice rack is the new medicine cabinet." in our cook book.  

Abelina and Juan's chocolate can be ordered online at 

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