Some good news: Hot chocolate can be healthy.

Praise be.

Whether it’s milky-sweet or not, chocolate warms the soul. But if you’re looking specifically for top-tier brain benefits, consider using only raw cocoa powder, which is made from ground whole cacao beans.

Raw cocoa benefits
packed with antioxidants
boosts cognition and brain function
soothes symptoms of stress and anxiety
You’ve probably heard that chocolate is very high in antioxidants. That’s because cacao contains polyphenols, a group of naturally occurring chemicals with antioxidant properties.

The brains behind the facts did the research and found that daily consumption of cocoa can improve mental performance and increase blood flow to the brain in as little as one week.

Flavanols, the largest family of polyphenolic compounds, are associated with enhanced cognition.

And since cocoa has the highest amount of flavanols per weight of any food, it’s no wonder our brains scream for chocolate halfway through the day (or, let’s be real, after a presentation).

Speaking of screaming, raw cocoa is also linked to decreased anxiety, depression, and stress. One study showed that consuming cocoa once a day for 30 days significantly increased feelings of calmness and contentment.