Didn’t win that coveted Nobel Prize last week? Well, there’s always next year. And here’s a little tip to improve your chances, straight from the pages of the New England Journal of Medicine: eat more chocolate. Say what?! Well, several studies have shown that chocolate is chock full of stuff that improves your brain power. As if you needed another reason to eat the sweet stuff!
Dr. Franz H. Messerli looked at the correlation between a nation’s chocolate consumption and the number of Nobel laureates among its population. His findings were, in his words, “surprisingly powerful.” Indeed, when the per capita consumption of chocolate goes up, the number of prize-winning scientists and academics goes up too. Case in point: Switzerland, where you’ll find the most Nobel laureates per capita and the highest rate of chocolate consumption per capita out of anywhere on the planet.
Sure, most of us will never have a shot at winning a Nobel — but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t take the advice to heart. Chocolate contains flavanols, a kind of dietary flavonoid shown to improve cognitive performance. In other words, chocolate has the ability to boost your thinking, your memory and your ability to perceive and understand ideas. Some studies of flavanols have even shown that it can reverse or slow down the the aging process’ affect on cognitive ability.
So don’t skip that dessert tonight — your brain will thank you later!