For a healthier mind, take a quick study break and hit the grocery store for some brain-boosting study snacks. We’ve put together six of the snack foods that are healthiest for your brain and while you may not see a direct quick fix for an exam cram session, a steady diet of these brain-boosting foods will improve your cognitive function and capacity over time ensuring a healthier, more energetic brain..
Foods for Brain Health:
They’re sweet, crunchy and come in a variety of different textures and flavors. This versatile fruit has antioxidant properties that can prevent memory loss and even reduce anxiety. Try them with a little bit of cinnamon or a dab of peanut butter.
If there was ever an award show for healthy food, blueberries would be nominated! They can improve both memory and focus. They also improve cognitive function, reasoning and decision-making ability. If you still need convincing, blueberries have also been linked to protecting the brain from stress; something we could all use a little less of. Eat them plain or squeeze a bit of lemon juice for more flavor.
Nuts & Seeds
Good for just about anything from your hair to your heart, nuts are essential for brain health as well. The main attraction in nuts and seeds is their great source of vitamin E and B6, which helps nourish your overall nervous system allowing you to think more clearly. Nuts and seeds can boost your brain power and your mood. Eat them as a raw snack or add them to oatmeal, cereal or Greek yogurt.
Skip the energy shots and processed sugars. For real long-lasting energy food for your brain, turn to whole grains. They provide the fuel your brain needs to stay alert and increase concentration and focus. They do this by providing your brain with its favorite food: glucose. The glucose found in whole grains is different than the glucose in processed sugars, which spike your energy and stress your brain out. While your body digests whole grains, glucose is absorbed into the blood stream and is pumped up to your brain for slow-burning, long-lasting energy. Whole grains are easy to find. Look for cereals and granola for a grainy snack!
Now before you get too excited, we’re not talking about convenience store chocolate here. Organic dark chocolate (around 70% and up) contains antioxidants called flavonoids that help to improve blood flow, regulate cholesterol and lower blood pressure. Chocolate also contains a chemical that encourages the brain to release endorphins, thereby improving your overall mood. Eat it raw or with some fruit for a brain boost.
There’s no key vitamin in water that your body can benefit from. However, the most important thing about water is that it keeps you hydrated. This is a big deal to your brain and all of the other organs in your body. Dehydration shrivels your brain tissue. If that isn’t enough to make you grab your bottle, consider this: dehydration also impairs short-term memory, focus and decision making. Squeeze a lemon or drop some strawberries in your water and soak up some good old H20 for your brain.