You worked tirelessly throughout the semester, and just a few research papers and a couple of written examinations stand between you and a summer of fun.
You can lock yourself away for a few days to study, but those looking for a little extra edge on the day of final examinations need to look no further than the kitchen. Certain nutrients in your daily fruits, veggies and proteins make those items brain foods — meaning that they may enhance brain function, help you focus better, provide energy and may even slow cognitive decline as you age.
While these foods won’t boost your IQ or write a research paper for you, incorporating them into your diet will help improve overall brain health. Here are some of the foods, drinks and meals to consume during your finals this semester:
Eating the Most Important Meal of the Day before a 9 a.m. final examination could improve short-term memory and attention, according to WebMD.
The substance most commonly found in coffee, tea, energy drinks and chocolate will make you more alert and help you focus for the short term. Caffeine helps improve cognitive function by blocking adenosine, the chemical that slows your body down as the day progresses. Don’t overdo it though – too much caffeine could make you jittery and cause your body to crash.
The vitamin E found in walnuts can be a brain booster and slow cognitive decline as you age, according to Dr. Neal Barnard in his newest book, “Power Foods for the Brain.” Nuts also contain omega-3 fatty acids, which provide an extra boost by helping to rebuild brain cells.
Again, those omega-3 fatty acids are in fish, and they help with brain development. Plus, fish help retain memory and slow cognitive decline in older people.
The high level of anthocyanidins and flavonoids, which both have high antioxidant properties, found in blueberries and strawberries help fight off cognitive decline longer in women.
Why argue with the basics? Keeping yourself hydrated keeps your brain working well.