Next time I am eating breakfast out while traveling, I just might have a cup of hot chocolate. According to a study published in Neurology, researchers wanted to investigate the relationship between neurovascular coupling and cognitive function in elderly individuals with vascular risk factors and to determine whether neurovascular coupling could be modified by cocoa consumption. The study author Farzaneh A. Sorond, MD, PhD, of Harvard Medical School in Boston and a member of the American Academy of Neurology pointed out that “As different areas of the brain need more energy to complete their tasks, they also need greater blood flow. This relationship, called neurovascular coupling, may play an important role in diseases such as Alzheimer’s.” The study concluded that drinking two cups of hot chocolate a day may assist older people in keeping their brains healthy and their thinking skills sharp.
F. A. Sorond et al., Neurovascular coupling, cerebral white matter integrity, and response to cocoa in older people, Neurology, 2013; DOI: 10.1212/WNL.0b013e3182a351aa