Eating Ice Cream For Breakfast Will Make You Smarter, Japanese Scientist Claims

First Posted: Nov 24, 2016 03:40 AM EST

A new study conducted by a Japanese scientist will give nutritionist the shock of their lives. The study claims that having a scoop of ice cream for breakfast can give a person's brain boost leading to improved alertness and mental performance.

Yoshihiko Koga, a professor at Kyorin University in Tokyo, has conducted a series of clinical trials where test subjects were required to eat ice cream immediately after waking up. They were then put through a series of mental exercises on a computer.

According to Excite News, Professor Koga found that the people who had eaten ice cream had faster reaction times and were better at processing information compared to those who had not eaten ice cream.

After monitoring the subjects' brain activity, Prof. Koga found an increase in high-frequency alpha waves, which are usually associated with elevated levels of alertness and reduced mental irritation. To further examine the possibility that the test subjects' reactions were simply the result of the brain being shocked into higher levels of alertness by the low temperature of the ice cream, Professor Koga repeated the experiment -- only this time he used cold water instead of ice cream.

The experiment revealed that participants who drank cold water displayed an increased level of alertness and mental capacity, but the levels were not as pronounced as compared to when the subjects started their day with ice cream, reported The Telegraph.

Professor Koga is still continuing his study and is also still trying to establish a solid connection between the mental boost delivered by ice cream and a specific ingredient in it, while another explanation says that ice cream is a treat that triggers positive emotions and added energy.

Meanwhile, British nutritionists have reacted with some skepticism to Prof. Koga's findings. "A possible explanation [for increased alertness]... is the simple presence of consuming breakfast vs. not consuming breakfast," said Katie Barfoot, a Nutritional Psychology Doctoral Researcher at Reading University.

"Our brain needs glucose to function, and a high glucose meal will aid mental capacity considerably compared to a fasted brain," she continued. "This, however, does not condone eating dessert for breakfast. A study which explores the interaction between consumption of low and high GI foods, whilst including a fasted group, would establish a better understanding of this increased mental capacity."

Professor Koga is an expert in psychophysiology, a branch of psychology concerned with the interaction between the body and the mind.

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