Grab yourself your favourite mug and get cosy because we’ve got some great news for you!
According to some researchers at the University of Birmingham, drinking hot chocolate might temporarily boost cognitive ability. The study focused on “the link between increased brain blood oxygenation and cognitive ability”.
The study was carried out twice and focused on 18 healthy men in order to understand how the antioxidants in cocoa affect the human brain. With caution and care, the men were exposed to high levels of 5% carbon dioxide, which is known to reduce circulation to the brain, before having to conquer some tough tasks.
The researchers found that those who drank cocoa rich in Flavanols (antioxidants) performed better and faster. “We can link this with our results on improved blood oxygenation. If you’re being challenged more, your brain needs improved blood oxygen levels to manage that challenge”.
However, one group had high levels of oxygen and so, results show that they did not improve, Dr. Rendeiro adds, “This may indicate some individuals, that perhaps are already very fit, have little room for further improvement”… “It also further suggests Flavanols might be particularly beneficial during cognitively demanding tasks”.
Flavanols can also be found in certain fruits and vegetables – but let’s face it, we’ll take any excuse to eat chocolate… especially if it’s melted and topped with whipped cream and marshmallows!