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A Supplement to Help You Maintain Cognitive Function

A new supplement, Memory & Focus, from CocoaVia is designed to help you maintain cognitive function at optimal levels.

If you want natural blood pressure control, you can follow a DASH diet. Numerous studies have shown that such a regimen can help lower blood pressure and prevent cardiovascular complications. But what do you do if you want to keep your brain working well? Perhaps you’ll focus on cocoa flavonoids and caffeine. Studies demonstrate that these natural compounds can help maintain cognitive function. We want to let you know about a new product from our sponsor CocoaVia.

One recent review of research concludes that “dietary interventions with flavonoids remains a promising avenue for future research,” although there are still questions that need answers (Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience, Sep. 3, 2021).  Cocoa contains high levels of such flavonoids. Researchers have often recruited older individuals to study the cognitive effects of these compounds (Scientific Reports, Feb. 15, 2021).  However, the elderly are not the only ones who might benefit.

Cocoa Compounds Help Younger Adults Maintain Cognitive Function:

Studies show that concentrated cocoa intake can also help young adults improve or maintain cognitive function (Nutrients, Dec. 2020).  Scientists attribute that, in part, to the improvement in blood flow to the brain in response to cocoa flavanols (Journal of Cardiovascular Pharmacology, 2006, Supplement 2).  One randomized double-blind trial found that university students consuming cocoa flavanols improved their visual search efficiency (Psychopharmacology, May 2018).

Other Compounds That May Be Helpful:

In formulating a product that would help people maintain cognitive function at its optimal level, CocoaVia considered other compounds that would enhance its special cocoa extract. The brand-new Memory & Focus product combines the potent flavanol epicatechin with cocoa flavanols, lutein and caffeine. The idea is to improve five different areas of brain performance: complex attention, executive function (planning and organizing), word recall, long-term memory and visual memory. Research supports the efficacy of each of these compounds.


A meta-analysis of seven randomized controlled trials found that dietary lutein seemed to improve complex attention, executive function and memory (Molecules, Oct. 2021).  However, the trials were of uneven quality, leading the authors to plead for more well-designed intervention studies on the ability of lutein to help maintain cognitive function.


Epicatechin is a flavanol found in green tea as well as cocoa, apples and berries. A review of 8 studies evaluating cognitive effects of cocoa compounds found that flavanols, including epicatechin, increase nitric oxide that dilates blood vessels in the brain (Nutrients, July 27, 2018). In addition, they seem to benefit memory, processing speed and executive function.


Plenty of people count on caffeine to jolt their brains into action in the morning. A review of 13 placebo-controlled studies concluded that low and moderate doses of caffeine before exercise can improve attention and possibly boost cognitive function. (Nutrients, March 6, 2021). Both caffeine and L-theanine (from tea) appear to improve cognitive performance (Cureus, Dec. 30, 2021).

Memory & Focus Launch:

As we summarize this research for you, we conclude that the new product from CocoaVia might well help us all maintain cognitive function in better shape. The product is Memory & Focus, and it combines cocoa extract, epicatechin, lutein and caffeine into a single daily capsule. The 50 mg dose of caffeine is approximately equivalent to half a cup of coffee. If you are as intrigued as we are, you’ll want to take advantage of Brain Health Month at CocoaVia.com. The link is https://www.cocoavia.com/pages/all-products and the code for a 25% discount is BRAIN.

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About the Author
Terry Graedon, PhD, is a medical anthropologist and co-host of The People’s Pharmacy radio show, co-author of The People’s Pharmacy syndicated newspaper columns and numerous books, and co-founder of The People’s Pharmacy website. Terry taught in the Duke University School of Nursing and was an adjunct assistant professor in the Department of Anthropology. She is a Fellow of the Society of Applied Anthropology. Terry is one of the country's leading authorities on the science behind folk remedies..
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  • Gardener SL et al, "Intake of products containing anthocyanins, flavanols, and flavanones, and cognitive function: A narrative review." Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience, Sep. 3, 2021. DOI: 10.3389/fnagi.2021.640381
  • Sloan RP et al, "Insights into the role of diet and dietary flavanols in cognitive aging: results of a randomized controlled trial." Scientific Reports, Feb. 15, 2021. DOI: 10.1038/s41598-021-83370-2
  • Martín MA et al, "Effect of cocoa and cocoa products on cognitive performance in young adults." Nutrients, Dec. 2020. doi: 10.3390/nu12123691 PMCID: PMC7760676 PMID: 33265948
  • Francis ST et al, "The effect of flavanol-rich cocoa on the fMRI response to a cognitive task in healthy young people." Journal of Cardiovascular Pharmacology, 2006, Supplement 2. DOI: 10.1097/00005344-200606001-00018
  • Karabay A et al, "The acute effects of cocoa flavanols on temporal and spatial attention." Psychopharmacology, May 2018. DOI: 10.1007/s00213-018-4861-4
  • Li J & Abdel-Aal E-SM, "Dietary lutein and cognitive function in adults: A meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials." Molecules, Oct. 2021. DOI: 10.3390/molecules26195794
  • Haskell-Ramsay CF et al, "The impact of epicatechin on human cognition: The role of cerebral blood flow." Nutrients, July 27, 2018. DOI: 10.3390/nu10080986
  • Calvo JL et al, "Caffeine and cognitive functions in sports: A systematic review and meta-analysis." Nutrients, March 6, 2021. DOI: 10.3390/nu13030868
  • Sohail AA et al, "The cognitive-enhancing outcomes of caffeine and L-theanine: A systematic review." Cureus, Dec. 30, 2021. DOI: 10.7759/cureus.20828
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