Brain Food to Go Fall is in full swing and students across the country are already feeling the crunch of mid-term exams. With late night study sessions, classes, extracurricular activities, and a social life, many students struggle to maintain a healthy diet, resorting to grabbing quick, easy meals that lack the vitamins and nutrients your body needs. Without essential vitamins and nutrients the human brain can slow down and stop functioning as efficiently as we may like. Lucky for you, I’ve taken the time to learn a few things about fast foods that gives your brain a boost. Add a few or all of these to your on-the-go diet, and you’ll find yourself thinking clearly and working better toward your degree!
Vitamin B Vitamins B12, B6, and Folic Acid are all types of Vitamin B. These can be found in foods like fish, liver, leafy green vegetables, eggs, whole grains, and nuts, though many people choose to take these as supplements. For a quick snack that’s full of Vitamin B, grab some sunflower seeds or a hard-boiled egg.
Vitamin C Most of us see ‘Vitamin C’ and automatically think about oranges. (The marketing guy who came up with that was a genius.) But oranges fall roughly in the middle on the list of edible plant sources for this vitamin, which is thought to help boost mental agility. At the top of the list is the Kakadu plum, found primarily in Australia. Other sources that are high on the list include Black and Red Currants, Kiwi fruit, Red Peppers, Broccoli, Parsley, and Guava.
Vitamin E According to researchers, vitamin E may reduce cognitive decline. In its primary function it serves the body as an antioxidant, and protects your cells from oxidative damage. Good sources of Vitamin E are Almonds, Hazelnuts, Avocados, Asparagus, and Spinach.
Glucose As your body’s primary source of energy, glucose should be a vital part of your diet. Glucose is a vital carbohydrate that your brain and body need to get you through the day. The key to getting the most out of this nutrient is to consume foods with a low Glycemic Index or GI, meaning that the glucose in these foods is released over a longer period of time, providing a consistent source of energy as opposed to the spike and decline of energy in foods with a high GI. Good sources of low GI foods include most vegetables and sweet fruits, beans and nuts, small seeds, and most whole, intact, un-enriched grains.
Vitamin K This brain booster can be found mostly in your leafy green vegetables with Kale topping the list. Spinach, Collard and Mustard greens, Broccoli, and Brussels sprouts are also great sources of Vitamin K.
Zinc Fall is in the air and it’s the perfect time to grab a handful of roasted pumpkin seeds, which are high in zinc. Noted for its ability to help boost memory and cognitive skills, zinc can also be found in sunflower seeds, nuts, and beans. Whether you’re the over achieving student striving for a double major in business and web design, or if you’re like most of us who just want to pass the college math course, these foods are great sources of brain boosting vitamins that will help you think more clearly.
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