Will Eating Ice Cream for Breakfast Make You Smarter?

A Japanese scientist has reportedly discovered something that would make your mornings sweeter- eating ice cream for breakfast actually makes us smarter.

According to a report by the Telegraph UK, Yoshihiko Koga, a professor at Tokyo’s Kyorin University, has found that eating ice cream for breakfast improves a person’s mental performance and alertness. Koga conducted a series of clinical tests in which subjects were asked to eat ice cream right after waking up. The subjects were then subjected to a series of mental exercises in the computer.


His findings showed that subjects showed faster reaction times as well as better information-processing capabilities compared to a group that had not consumed ice cream. Moreover, the results showed that the subjects’ brain activity had an increase in high frequency alpha waves, which are linked to increased levels of alertness and decreased mental irritation.

In order to verify if the subjects’ reactions were caused by the brain being shocked into higher levels of alertness due to the low temperature of the ice cream, the researcher carried out the same experiment using cold water instead of ice cream. Results showed that subjects who drank cold water showed a degree of mental capacity and alertness, but were significantly lower than subjects who consumed ice cream.

Prof. Koga is yet to determine the connection between the mental boost brought about by the ice cream and a specific ingredient. A possible explanation is that ice cream is a treat that triggers positive emotions and extra energy.

But some British nutritionists are skeptical of  Prof. Koga’s findings. According to Nutrition expert Katie Barfoot, a high glucose meal will aid mental capacity significantly compared to a fasted brain.

“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,” Barfoot added.

Eating ice cream makes you happy

Neuroscientists at the Institute of Psychiatry in London have found that eating ice cream lights up the same pleasure center in the brain as winning money or listening to your favourite music.

“This is the first time that we’ve been able to show that ice cream makes you happy. Just one spoonful lights up the happy zones of the brain in clinical trials.”