- The Washington Times - Thursday, August 8, 2013

Want to stave off dementia?

Drink two cups of hot cocoa each day, neurologists say, in a new study published in the American Academy of Neurology.

The study included the participation of 60 people who had an average age of 73 and were never diagnosed with dementia. They drank two cups of hot cocoa each day for a month, while simultaneously abstaining from ingesting any other forms of chocolate, The Times of India reported.

During the test period, they also participated in various memory and thinking tests, while researchers tracked and monitored their brain blood flows with several ultrasounds.

Their findings: Eighteen of the 60 test subjects who had impaired blood flow to their brains at the beginning of the study experienced an 8.3 percent improvement by test’s end. Those with normal blood flow at the outset of the experiment did not see any improved blood flow.

Those who experienced the improved blood flow also saw their memory test results improve significantly, The Times of India reported. And once again, those who had normal blood flow at the beginning of the study did not see any improved memory test results at the end.

“More work is needed to prove a link between cocoa, blood flow problems and cognitive decline,” said Paul Rosenberg, of the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine in Baltimore, in The Times of India report. “But this is an important first step that could guide future studies.”