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ASSOCIATION BETWEEN DIETARY THEOBROMINE AND COGNITIVE FUNCTION IN A REPRESENTATIVE AMERICAN POPULATION: A CROSS-SECTIONAL STUDY

L. Gao, W. Ge, C. Peng, J. Guo, N. Chen, L. He

Background: Despite reports on neuroprotective effects of dietary theobromine intake, whether dietary theobromine has beneficial effects on cognitive function is unclear. Objectives: To investigate the association between dietary theobromine and cognitive function. Design: A cross-sectional study. Setting: Data were collected from the 2011-2014 cycles of the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention of the USA. Participants: A representative American population aged ≥60 years. Measurements: L-theobromine was treated as a log transform and dichotomous form (the highest quantile vs. others). Cognitive function was measured using four tests: Consortium to Establish a Registry for Alzheimer's Disease Word Learning tests, Consortium to Establish a Registry for Alzheimer's Disease delayed recall test, animal fluency test, and digit symbol substitution test. We conducted multiple regression analyses and subgroup analyses to study the association between theobromine and cognitive performance. Basic characteristics, lifestyle factors, disease history, and nutritional intake were adjusted for in these models. Results: A total of 2,845 participants were included in the study. The highest quantile of L-theobromine intake was positively associated with sores of delayed recall, animal fluency, and digit symbol substitution tests (β, 95% confidence interval, P: 0.11, -0.00-0.30, 0.049; 0.50, 0.02-0.99, 0.043; 1.55, 0.33-2.77, 0.015; respectively) in the fully adjusted model, but not with immediate recall score (β=0.13, 95% confidence interval -0.16-0.43, P=0.361). Subgroup analyses showed that L-theobromine intake was associated with cognitive performance in the highest quantile of caffeine intake. Conclusions: Daily theobromine intake was associated with cognitive performance in a large nationally representative population. However, further research is needed to corroborate our findings.

CITATION:
L. Gao ; W. Ge ; C. Peng ; J. Guo ; N. Chen ; L. He (2022): Association between Dietary Theobromine and Cognitive Function in a Representative American Population: A Cross-Sectional Study. The Journal of Prevention of Alzheimer’s Disease (JPAD). http://dx.doi.org/10.14283/jpad.2022.39

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