A recent study suggests that Nobel Prize winners are more likely to come from countries with a high consumption of dairy products. Unfortunately, that doesn't mean that you can start gorging on chocolate milkshakes in anticipation of winning the prize.
Chocolate milkshake picture from Shutterstock
A letter published in Practical Neurology extends on research published last year in the New England Journal of Medicine which suggested that Nobel Prize winners were more likely to come from countries with high chocolate consumption. Reasoning that chocolate is often consumed in conjunction with milk, the researchers from Gloucester Royal Hospital correlated date on milk consumption with the number of Nobel prizes per capita. As the researchers note: "there’s a plausible biological mechanism as milk is rich in vitamin D which may be linked with improved cognitive function".
However, the letter is also careful to remind us of that all-important rule: correlation is not causation. For instance, it may well be that countries with a higher level of milk consumption have better-developed education system. It's an interesting connection which is statistically significant, but that doesn't mean that it demonstrates a direct connection between dairy gorging and intellectual attainments. I'm going to eat some cheese anyway.
Milk, chocolate and Nobel prizes [Practical Neurology]