By Charles Hall, November 10th 2020
What is the most craved food in the world? Pizza? Rice? Ice cream? Nope. It turns out that it’s chocolate! Rituals, religions, currencies, wine, gels, flavorings, foods, candies, conquests, wars, economies, holidays and many more things are associated with or have been created from chocolate. Is it any wonder that it is associated with maintaining a healthy brain?
Now that we mentioned the brain, these are the primary areas of it that dark chocolate activates.
Do you know what these areas of the brain are called?
The frontal lobe (the CEO/decision maker of the brain) is that large part on the left of the above brain image and the dot and tadpole looking shape are parts of the reward pathways of the limbic system (the ‘I feel good’ part of the brain). Based of this brain activation I’d say dark chocolate basically helps you become the boss of your life and feel good while doing it! Maybe that’s why it’s so pervasive in our culture.
Why did the doughnut visit the dentist? Because he needed a chocolate filling!
What is a balanced diet with chocolate? A dark chocolate bar in both hands!
The rules on how to enjoy good chocolate: 1. Share with a friend 2. Eat in moderation 3. Remember, there are no rules.
How does chocolate contribute to brain health?
Dark chocolate helps the heart (1), it balances blood sugar (2), it lowers inflammation (3), it makes you feel great (4), it gives you the sensation of feeling in love, it nourishes the body a lot and on and on. Specifically, as far as the brain it contributes to an overall increase in blood supply to the brain (especially the frontal lobe), it lowers stress (helping preserve neural connections), in some studies it has been shown to improve working memory by 20%, and it improves clarity of focus (5,6). (See scientific references at the end)
Want to make your own Whole Brain Healthy Chocolate? Check out our video here:
Chocolate is a health food! Remember dark is best and your brain will thank you! If you can’t make your own there are many great brands out there (see below). The simpler the ingredient list the better and make sure it lists where the chocolate comes from. No Hershey’s or candy bars. Sorry. If you want to seriously feel great and improve your brain health then have some fun by getting some seriously good dark chocolate. I make mine with only the best ingredients!
Brands to seek out: -Lulu’s -Hu -Sacred Chocolate -Lily’s (sugar free) -Living Intentions -Imlak’esh -Lakanto (sugar free)
Check out our products page to purchase chocolate and help our organization as a small percentage supports Whole Brain Health!
Let me know how it goes searching for your perfect brain healthy chocolate bar or making your own! And remember if you have fun while improving your brain (i.e. eating tasty dark chocolate) you will improve your memory!
Thanks for reading! Want to help Whole Brain Health by shopping on amazon and paying nothing extra? Go through here and start a shopping list on amazon: https://amzn.to/2BzCUgk . Or go here and purchase a product that will contribute to a healthy brain: https://www.wholebrainhealth.org/products/ . You will pay nothing extra and Whole Brain Health will get a small kick back to help us create more programs that create the best and most fun brain healthy lifestyles for seniors! If you’d like to just give a straight tax deductible donation with a receipt for your records emailed to you right away go here: https://www.wholebrainhealth.org/donate/ .
Scientific References to Dark Chocolate Benefits
1.Chocolate – heart healthy: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3942736/
2.Chocolate – reduces risk of diabetes: https://academic.oup.com/ajcn/article/81/3/611/4648949
3. Chocolate – reduces inflammation: https://academic.oup.com/jn/article/138/10/1939/4670056
4.Chocolate – makes you feel great: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19942640
5. Chocolate – improves cognitive function: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6262453/
6. Chocolate – comprehensive list of biological changes with ingestion of cocoa flavonoids https://examine.com/supplements/cocoa-extract/