Friday, October 12, 2012


I just came across a very interesting paper, published in the Oct 10th online issue of NEJM. The author of this half truth half joke paper is Dr Franz Messerli from the Columbia University, New York. He felt that there was a correlation between eating dark chocolate and cognitive brilliance as in winning the Nobel prize. This is the Nobel Prize season.
So, Dr Messerli looked into the per capita dark chocolate consumption and also the ranked list of Nobel Prize winning country, by per capita. He found a straight linear correlation between how much chocolate a country consumes and the number of Nobel Prize winners in that country. The more chocolate consume in that country, the more Nobel Prize winners they produce.

Dr Messerli calculated that it takes an increase of 0.4Kgm per capita per year increase chocolate consumption, to increase the number of Nobel Prize winner by one. The amount of chocolate that needed to be consumed to get one Nobel Prize winner is 2 Kg per year.
Sweden, which consumes about 6.4 Kgm dark chocolate per year has the highest number of Nobel Prize winners ( 32 ).
Interesting, I thought.
The theory given was that dark chocolates, besides being cardio-protective, stroke protective and hypotension generating, also improves cognitive function. And of course, you need good cognitive functions to win Nobel prizes.
I wonder if all these are true. If it is, I should go buy tons of dark chocolates. Maybe I still have a chance.
By the way, Dr Messerli is Swiss. He likes dark Lindt chocolates. He has yet to win a Nobel Prize, although he has written some outstanding papers in the management of hypertension.

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