The acute electrocortical and blood pressure effects of chocolate

Michelle Montopoli, Larry C Stevens, Constance J Smith, George Montopoli, Stephanie Passino, Somer Brown, Lena Camou, Katie Carson, Shannon Maaske, Kathleen Knights, William Gibson, Joyce Wu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Objective: The present study investigated the effects of consuming chocolate on electroencephalograph (EEG) frequencies and localization and on blood pressure. Method: Across six conditions, 122 participants consumed either higher (60%) cacao chocolate, low (0%) cacao chocolate, higher cacao chocolate + L-theanine, high sugar water, low sugar water, or water. EEGs, blood pressure, and mood were measured before and after a 60-min digestion period. Results: Analyses indicated a decrease in frontal, parietal, and temporal theta and an increase in occipital beta EEG following the consumption of a 60% cacao confection compared with control conditions. Diastolic blood pressure increased with the consumption of higher cacao chocolate when compared to water alone and to higher cacao chocolate + L-theanine. Diastolic and systolic blood pressure decreased following consumption of higher cacao + L-theanine chocolate, averaging 4-8 mmHg. No condition-specific mood changes or gender differences were found. Conclusions: This study suggests an acute stimulating effect of cacao on the human brain and vasoconstrictive effects on peripheral vasculature, the latter of which appear to be offset by an L-theanine additive. Significance: This is the first known study to investigate acute EEG effects of consuming chocolate and suggests a potential attention-enhancing effect.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3-28
Number of pages26
JournalNeuroRegulation
Volume2
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015

Fingerprint

Cacao
Blood Pressure
Water
Candy
Chocolate
Digestion
Electroencephalography
theanine
Brain

Keywords

  • Blood pressure
  • Cacao
  • Chocolate
  • Cocoa
  • EEG
  • L-theanine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology (medical)
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

Cite this

The acute electrocortical and blood pressure effects of chocolate. / Montopoli, Michelle; Stevens, Larry C; Smith, Constance J; Montopoli, George; Passino, Stephanie; Brown, Somer; Camou, Lena; Carson, Katie; Maaske, Shannon; Knights, Kathleen; Gibson, William; Wu, Joyce.

In: NeuroRegulation, Vol. 2, No. 1, 01.01.2015, p. 3-28.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Montopoli, M, Stevens, LC, Smith, CJ, Montopoli, G, Passino, S, Brown, S, Camou, L, Carson, K, Maaske, S, Knights, K, Gibson, W & Wu, J 2015, 'The acute electrocortical and blood pressure effects of chocolate', NeuroRegulation, vol. 2, no. 1, pp. 3-28. https://doi.org/10.15540/nr.2.1.3
Montopoli, Michelle ; Stevens, Larry C ; Smith, Constance J ; Montopoli, George ; Passino, Stephanie ; Brown, Somer ; Camou, Lena ; Carson, Katie ; Maaske, Shannon ; Knights, Kathleen ; Gibson, William ; Wu, Joyce. / The acute electrocortical and blood pressure effects of chocolate. In: NeuroRegulation. 2015 ; Vol. 2, No. 1. pp. 3-28.
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