Eat Chocolate, Win Nobel Prize?

Eat Chocolate & Win Nobel Prize?

Good news for all Chocoholics: there’s a host of great reasons quality cocoa is good for you. It’s great for your heart, may give the same health benefits as exercise, and some even prefer it to sex!

What you may not have known though, is there may be a link between eating chocolate and having super-smart brains. Super-smart brains that win Nobel Prizes, to be specific.

Chocolate, the Secret of Nobel Prize Winners?

Yep, it’s true. Or so it seems on the surface at least. The higher a country’s average chocolate consumption, the higher the number of Nobel Prize winners per capita.

This is the surprising finding of research published in the New England journal of Medicine. Key researcher on the project, Franz Messerli, came up with the idea for the research after seeing a study linking flavonoids, antioxidants found in wine and cocoa, to higher scores on intelligence tests.

Chocolate and Wine - Flavinoids, Anti-Oxidants

So. Which countries come out tops? Surprise, surprise, it’s the Swiss. Sweden and Denmark come in close behind, with the US somewhere near the middle of the pack. According to Messerli, in order to produce just one single Nobel laureate extra per annum, the US would need to increase its chocolate intake by a massive 125 million kilos per year!

Several researchers have suggested dark chocolate in particular can benefit heart and brain function, and possibly even help keep weight under control (unfortunately there’s no evidence yet for any real health benefits from milk chocolate). If you’re wondering though if it all seems a little too good to be true, you’re in good company. As it turns out, unfortunately, there is a catch to these findings.

Can Chocolate Really Make you Smarter?

Messerli admits however it’s unlikely there’s a direct link between eating chocolate and winning the Nobel prize. Though his data is accurate, it holds a few lessons about the limitations of science.

As the scientific maxim goes: ‘correlation does not imply causation’. Or in other words, just because there’s a link, doesn’t mean the one causes the other. There may be other factors involved that are behind both.

In this case, both national chocolate consumption rates and high quality research are linked with overall wealth. Further still, chocolate consumption and general intelligence are also linked with general good nutrition standards. So maybe put down that king-size Cadbury block for now!

Or at least, until further research is done…

Chocolate Research

Yes. ‘Research’.

What Do You Think? Can chocolate really make you smarter? Or is it really too good to be true? Is there another reason those Swiss, Danes and Swedes pump out so many Nobel laureates? Do let us know your thoughts, we love to hear your opinions!

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