Schoolwork never stops piling up — from memorizing flashcards to reading textbooks until the content becomes second nature, students’ days are action-packed. Maintaining brain health, especially when cramming for big exams, is the most efficient way to promote mental performance. With the following eight foods, your diet and progress in school will thank you later.
Rich in antioxidants and compounds that enhance brain functions, berries are the number one way to help lagging memory. Blueberries, strawberries, and blackberries are notably high in anthocyanins, which are proven to increase blood flow and improve cell production. Spice up your morning smoothie or take berry-flavored supplements to feed your mind and body.
2. Dark Chocolate
Surprise — everyone’s guilty pleasure is also a brain supercharge! Oddly enough (but luckily for sweet-eaters), cacao is high in flavonoid content. This fan-favorite treat is known for supporting brain and heart health, as blood travels with high levels of oxygen and nutrients to performance-related organs. But before the excitement peaks, it’s important to know that most popular chocolate products don’t contain sufficient levels of flavanols. If you choose wisely, though, cocoa intake can reduce mental fatigue and boost reaction time — instead of making you gain a couple of pounds.
PSA to readers with nut allergies: skip over to our next brain food! Nuts are a quick and easy snack that will nourish your brain with vitamin E and zinc. The misconception is that a handful of nuts will result in weight gain, but the fat they contain is healthy. As concentrated sources of fiber and protein, nuts — particularly almonds, pistachios, and walnuts — will guarantee an energized study session.
4. Citrus Fruits
We’ve mentioned berries, but let’s not forget about citrus fruits. Fuel your brain and stomach with a nutritious, flavonoid-filled fruit to ward off mental decline. Reach maximum citric concentration by drinking fruit juice; squeezing up your orange and grapefruit will not only burst some sunshine into your day but also offer a host of vitamins that will improve your mental status.
A millennial favorite luxury item has turned into a health guru’s essential product. It’s no surprise that avocados are the latest trend in the kitchen — from mashing it into guacamole or spreading it on toast, there’s a seemingly endless list of ways to eat the versatile fruit. To hype avocados up further, they’re also an excellent source of lutein, which is associated with better mental function. Satisfy your taste buds and feed your soul with this A+ study hack.
Omega-3s, omega-3s, and more omega-3s! These essential fats are packed in fish and play an enormous role in enhancing memory and slowing mental decline. Salmon, mackerel, and sardines are among the healthiest fish you’ll find at the market. Pairing this source of protein with leafy greens will keep you alert, satisfied, and ready to tackle work.
A healthy breakfast is always key, but when eggs are added to the mix, you’re one step ahead of the game. The list of nutrients in whole eggs is extensive, ranging from vitamin B12 to choline and selenium. These brain-function-promoting benefits are in egg yolks and guarantee greater motor performance and memory storage. Remember to cook eggs for brunch next time you have a big exam coming up.
8. Pumpkin Seeds
Fall is right around the corner — and so is pumpkin season. Stock up on pumpkin seeds as you start hitting the books this year to enhance your thinking skills. Adding to the benefits, pumpkin seeds are also full of stress-busting magnesium and B vitamins. The long-term mental boosts go beyond the fall season!