London, June 30: Chocolates are favourite for all the age groups. In a study, it may enhance your cognitive skills such as working memory, visual processing speed in older adults.
Chocolates are prepared from the cocoa bean, a rich source of flavanols that has neuroprotective effects.
Older adults who had an intake of cocoa flavanols daily showed improvements in their memory like attention, processing speed.
“This study suggests the potential of cocoa flavanols to protect cognition in vulnerable populations over time by improving cognitive performance,” Valentina Socci from the University of L’Aquila in Italy.
“If you look at the underlying mechanism, the cocoa flavanols have beneficial effects for cardiovascular health and can increase cerebral blood volume in the dentate gyrus of the hippocampus. This structure is particularly affected by ageing and therefore the potential source of age-related memory decline in humans,” Socci added.
Further, cocoa is beneficial in case of women, suffering from chronic sleep deprivation or work shifts. The effect takes time ranging from five days up to three months.
“Regular intake of cocoa and chocolate could indeed provide beneficial effects on cognitive functioning over time,” however, “there are potential side effects,” said Michele Ferrara from the University of L’Aquila in Italy.
“Those are generally linked to the caloric value of chocolate, some inherent chemical compounds of the cocoa plant such as caffeine and theobromine, and a variety of additives we add to chocolate such as sugar or milk,” Ferrara added.