The raw food industry is gaining momentum and is a great indication that people are wanting to consume more consciously.
A healthful raw foods diet (or meal!) should focus on whole, fresh, minimally processed foods sprouts, greens, raw soaked nuts and seeds, fruit, and even some superfoods, if you feel so inclined (more on superfoods below!).
Raw cacao has recently gotten a lot of attention- some tests done, including those by the United States Department of Agriculture, show that raw cacao has some of the highest levels of antioxidants of any food.
The main difference between raw chocolate and regular chocolate, processing wise, is that the cacao beans in raw chocolate are not roasted, nor do they reach temperatures above about 49 °C. This number is considered by many to be the point at which digestive aiding enzymes can stay alive in most foods though this does vary greatly depending upon the food! In fact, as cacao beans are a little heartier, they are able to withstand higher temperatures than say, baby spinach, and keep more of their nutrients.
As raw cacao has not been processed in the same way as regular cacao, it can have some stimulating effects on people- for example, a lot of people say that they cant eat raw cacao at night- or they won’t be able to sleep! People who dont consume many other stimulants (such as caffeine, white sugar, or alcohol) may be more sensitive to the stimulating effects of raw cacao.