Published on: January 7, 2015
by Revathi Siva Kumar for News Everyday:
Chocolate is good for more than your tongue. It even boosts your brain as you grow older.
In a study by researchers from Italy’s University of L’Aquila and Mars Incorporated, many cognitive studies threw more light on the role of diet on cognitive health.
Dr. Giovambattista Desideri, lead author of the research said that diet can be changed to suit your brain’s health.
In a two-part study by the team, cocoa flavanols made a cognitive and cardio-metabolic impact on older adults with mild cognitive impairment (MCI). However, what is the effect of cocoa flavanols on those without MCI? A second study probed the issue. Both men and women aged 61-85 years without any cognitive dysfunction were called for a “controlled, randomized, double-blind study”.
They were divided into three groups, and each was assigned to a flavanol group. The first one drank either high (993 mg) flavanols, the second drak intermediate (520 mg) and the third a low (48 mg) cocoa flavanols everyday for two months.
Mars’ Cocoapro process helped to prepare the high and intermediate flavanol cocoa drinks. The low flavanol drink was made with a “highly processed, alkalized cocoa powder”.
Otherwise, the lifestyles and diets were regular for all those who participated in the study.
A number of tests were administered to the volunteers, examining “memory, retention, recall, as well as executive function”.
Even those who regularly drank the high or intermediate flavanol drinks, the overall cognitive function found a marked improvement after two months. Hence, it is clear that even those who are cognitively healthy would improve by including cocoa flavanols in their diets.
Scientists during a study at Columbia University Medical Centre found that flavanols help a typical 60-year-old brains to work as if it were just 30 or 40 years old. Anyone taking large doses of flavanols tend to improve the areas of their brain that help in memory formation.
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