ALERT: If You Like Chocolate, Here’s VITAL Information You Need Before Taking One More Bite

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There’s not many people out there who dislike chocolate, and it’s hard to blame them. For centuries, the sweet treat has gratified our sweet tooth and soothed our souls, but apparently, it does a lot more than we previously thought. New information reveals what really happens when we eat it, and it’s not what you think.

We’ve already known that chocolate does a variety of things for our bodies, including reducing the risk of strokes, helping to prevent heart attacks, and even protecting our skin from the sun, but a new study found it does even more, and chocolate lovers are going to be ecstatic about it. The journal Appetite recently published a study indicating that those eating chocolate at least once a week saw both their memory and abstract thinking improve.

“It’s significant – it touches a number of cognitive domains,” psychologist Merrill Elias, one of the leaders of the study, told the Washington Post.

According to the Telegraph, Elias started studying the cognitive abilities of over a thousand people in New York in the 1970s, which started with looking at the relationship between brain function and blood pressure. Then roughly 15 years ago, he started asking participants of the Maine-Syracuse Longitudinal Study (MSLS) what they were eating, which added a new set of questions about dietary habits among them.

That’s when he and another researcher decided to use the opportunity to examine the effects of chocolate on the brain, which led to their incredible findings.

The Telegraph has more:

Examining the mean scores on cognitive tests of participants who ate chocolate less than once a week and those who ate it at least once a week, the researchers found eating chocolate was strongly linked to superior brain function. The benefits, Ms Crichton told the Washington Post, would mean you would be better at daily tasks “such as remembering a phone number, or your shopping list, or being able to do two things at once, like talking and driving at the same time.”

In order to see whether smarter people simply tend to eat more chocolate or if the food does actually improve brain function, the researchers studied 333 participants whose cognitive abilities had been tested an average of 18 years before they were quizzed about what they eat. They found cognitive ability does not predict whether you a chocolate eater or not.

Why this is the case remains uncertain. However, previous studies have shown that food containing nutrients called flavanols, such as chocolate, improves brain function. In 2009, research found mental arithmetic became easier after volunteers had been given large amounts of flavanols in a hot cocoa drink.

Elias said that their study doesn’t seem to suggest that those with greater cognitive abilities consume more chocolate, but rather that those who consume chocolate see an increase in their abilities. However, despite his study showing that chocolate is in fact good for the brain, Elias warns not to go out and stuff your face with it.

“I think what we can say for now is that you can eat small amounts of chocolate without guilt if you don’t substitute chocolate for a normal balanced healthy diet,” he added.

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