• Wed
  • Jul 23, 2014
  • Updated: 10:10pm

Brain food

PUBLISHED : Monday, 03 October, 2005, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 03 October, 2005, 12:00am

If you want to do well at school, you need to make sure your brain is in top condition. You can do this by making sure it gets the right kind of food - brain food. Studies show that certain foods can help you concentrate and improve your memory.


Some foods will fire up your brain, others will make it sluggish, so choose your lunch wisely. If you eat a lot of carbohydrates (rice, potatoes, bread), you may feel drowsy. This is because the carbohydrates help to produce a chemical called serotonin. Protein (fish), on the other hand, increases the brain's production of dopamine, a natural brain chemical that helps you feel alert.


There are some foods that the brain loves, like glucose. Glucose is the brain's on-energy source - trying to think without glucose is like trying to drive a car without petrol. This is why it's important to eat at regular intervals to avoid your blood-sugar level (glucose) from dropping too low.


How to boost your brain power


Fish and fish oils


Our brain cells need to regularly refresh themselves with fatty acids. They respond especially well to DHA, an Omega-3 fatty acid found in fish. Studies show that it boosts the brain's development.


Breakfast


If you want to get good grades, you cannot skip breakfast. Your brain needs energy and depriving it of food in the morning will make it hard to concentrate in class.


Blueberries


Recent research shows that blueberries protect the brain, and even affect the way brain cells communicate with each other.


Iron


We need iron to carry oxygen to our brain cells and it helps to make brain neurotransmitters, especially the ones that help us pay attention. Studies have shown that students who are iron deficient find it difficult to concentrate during lessons and this affects their grades. You can get iron from raisins, cereals and beef.


Ginkgo Biloba


Scientists have been fascinated with this herb for the past 15 years. It has been shown to increase circulation and oxygen delivery to the brain. And what's more, it helps to improve memory.


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