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Nutrition and motor skill and cognitive performance improvement in athletes

Published Date

11/20/15 9:26 AM


 

Nutrition plays an important role in optimal mental function. Dietary constituents may influence brain function through acute effects from a single dose and/or chronic effects of daily intake. So, if you are preparing a difficult exam or you are involved in a sport competition that requires coordination, decision-making, timing and other cognitive task this may be of your interest.

Several dietary constituents have been described to improve cognitive functions. This short news is focused on chocolate flavonoids. Compared to a placebo group, the intake of 520 mg of cocoa flavonoids (equivalent to 30 g of dark chocolate) significantly improved attention, visual function (contrast sensitivity and reaction time) and cognitive performance (memory and reaction time). It seems that the mechanism of action is derived by an increase in blood flow to the brain. What is interesting is that this effect is also observed for other flavonoids rich foods like cranberries.