Chocolate may well be the world’s most craved food for a very good reason. For the most part, we eat chocolate because we love the rich, creamy texture and for the delicious taste. However, chocolate is more that just a “feel good” food; it also offers numerous benefits like boosting heart health and paving way for healthy looking skin . Research shows that chocolate may even boost and improve brain function. Consuming, very dark, high quality chocolate flavonols could be just the advantage you need to win your next chess match or scrabble game.
Improve Brain Function - Give Your Brain a Healthy Snack
Italian researchers conducted a study that has given good reason to believe that cocoa flavonols consumed as part of a healthy diet may improve brain function. For the study, participants were divided into three groups; the first group consumed a very small amount of cocoa flavonol beverage while the second group consumed a moderate amount of the same beverage. The third group consumed the highest amount.
Results demonstrated that those participants who consumed a moderate and larger amount of the beverage had enhanced hand-eye coordination, verbal memory, and task-switching. Scientists argue that the link between the flavonols and improved cognitive ability is related to improved insulin sensitivity. Dark chocolate, it seems, helps the body to lower blood sugar naturally. Science Daily reports on a similar study done in the United Kingdom where cocoa flavonols appeared to improve blood flow to the brain which in turn boosted cognitive alertness.
The impacts of these and other similar studies could be very far reaching and hint at the prospect that cocoa flavonols may improve brain function in people battling sleep deprivation and fatigue. Consuming moderate amounts of chocolate has already been shown to reduce the risk of stroke, lower blood pressure, and improve good cholesterol. Is chocolate good for you? Absolutely.
Dark chocolate contains magnesium, vitamins A, B1, B2, D, and E and is rich in antioxidants making its free radical fighting power worthy of consideration. Research has indicated that chocolate helps people live a long and disease free life. Interestingly enough, the worlds oldest living woman, aged 122 consumed 2.5 pounds of dark chocolate each week.
To benefit most from consuming chocolate, try to choose organic, high-quality dark chocolate that contains at least 70% cocoa. Similarly, avoid mainstream candies provided by companies like Hershey’s. Eating unprocessed cocoa is best, as the body can more easily process the chocolate due to lower sugar levels. A small square of this dark wonder is all that’s needed daily to improve overall health, improve brain function, and keep your thinking clear.