In February 2020 researchers from the UK published the results of their study to assess whether benefits to verbal episodic memory and mood are observed two hours following the consumption of a commercially available bar of dark chocolate. A total of 98 healthy young adults (41 males, 57 females), aged 18-24 years, were involved in the study. Each individual consumed either a 35 g dark chocolate bar or a calorie-matched low flavonoid white chocolate bar. Verbal episodic memory and mood were assessed both prior and at 2 hours following consumption. Results showed that the dark chocolate was associated with better verbal memory performance when compared to the white chocolate. However, no effects on mood were seen. The researchers therefore concluded portions of dark chocolate may have a beneficial effect on the brain in healthy young adults.
Lamport DJ et a. Beneficial Effects of Dark Chocolate for Episodic Memory in Healthy Young Adults: A Parallel-Groups Acute Intervention with a White Chocolate Control. Nutrients. 2020 Feb 14;12(2). pii: E483