Top 10 Brain Foods to Help You Perform Your Best

Having a big test on the horizon usually means a ton of time spent in study-mode. Chances are that this time period includes many late nights of copious note taking. You may feel like you are doing everything you can to ensure your success, but you are probably overlooking your diet (especially if your “crunched-for-time” state of mind has you making trips to the nearest fast food spot for a quick dinner).

Below are 10 foods that are scientifically proven brain-boosters. Adding these to your diet in the days and weeks leading up to a test may just help you perform at your very best. At the least, they’ll help you stay healthier during this stressful period.

best brain food1. SAGE - Compounds in sage prevent the breakdown of acetylcholine, an enzyme that helps the brain to work properly and improves brain function on memory-related tasks.

2. WALNUTS - These powerhouse nuts are a great source of Alpha Linolenic Acid (ALA), which helps promote blood flow, allowing for efficient delivery of oxygen to the brain. They also contain antioxidants and Omega-3 fatty acids that may boost brainpower.

3. PUMPKIN SEEDS - Packed with zinc, just a handful a day of these seeds will enhance your memory and thinking skills.

4. EGGS - Eggs contain high levels of tryptophan, an amino acid that relates to several brain functions. These include sleep, sensitivity to pain, and mood control. Additionally, eating protein-rich foods, like eggs, can improve overall cognitive performance.

5. SPINACH - Rich in the antioxidant lutein, spinach helps to prevent against cognitive decline.

6. BERRIES - Diets high in berry consumption have been linked to a slower mental decline, especially in the areas of memory and focus.

7. BEETS - The natural nitrates in beets improve blood flow to the brain, thereby improving mental performance.

8. OILY/FATTY FISH - Sardines and salmon are packed with omega-3 fatty acids, EPA, and DHA, which may lower the risk of dementia and improve focus and memory.

9. CHILI PEPPERS - Boost your alertness during study sessions by noshing on these spicy peppers and you’ll also be getting a megadose of vitamin C, which ups the function of nerve endings.

10. STEAK - Red meat helps to maintain healthy iron levels, which may increase the performance and speed of mental tasks. Additionally, beef is high in vitamin B12, which may help prevent neurological disorders, mental disturbances, and blood chemistry alterations.

What are your favorite pre-exam foods?

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