Staying mentally sharp with a good memory is important for all us, especially students, so we asked our friends from SurvivingCollege.com to come up with some of the best brain foods for a better memory.
If you want to be a better student, you will need to maintain your competitive edge. That means a healthy diet that is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, diets high in trans and saturated fats will boost your brain and memory and keep you mentally sharp all throughout the day.
All 8 tips are time and tested. This should be our cornerstone and a lifetime strategy for keeping our memory sound and clear even beyond college life.
1) EATING SMART RICH IN OMEGA-3 FATTY ACIDS
Eating fish regularly is a good source of protein that is not high in saturated fats and omega-3 fatty acids. It also benefits the heart of healthy people and also those with cardiovascular diseases. Try eating fish or shellfish that are low in mercury (ex. shrimp, canned light tuna, salmon, pollock, and catfish). And avoid high levels of mercury such as eating shark, swordfish, king mackerel, or tilefish.
- Go Fish: At least two times (two servings) a week
- Fatty Fish to Eat: salmon, mackerel, herring, lake trout, sardines and albacore tuna
- Serving Size: Each serving is 3.5 ounce cooked, or about ¾ cup of flaked fish
2) DRINK CAFFEINATED COFFEE AND TEA TO BOOST ALERTNESS AND MOOD
Drinking caffeinated coffee and tea has a number of health effects on our body and brain. However, it all depends on how we consume it. If done in moderation, our caffeinated drinks could improve our memory, also boost athletic performance, and lastly, can be also good to our hearts.
- Upgrade your coffee by finding the best roasters in your city who work with quality beans.
- Drink two cups of coffee as it may improve memory skills, reaction time, and neuron signaling in the brain as compared to not drinking one.
- Avoid hyper-caffeinated energy drinks or sugary drinks
- For teas, go for both green and black tea. They are known memory-boosters.
3) BLUEBERRIES AND STRAWBERRIES
Blueberries are my favorite go-to fruit as it is tasty, low in calories and are nutritious. The antioxidants in blueberries may affect memory function that is essential to our intelligence. Highly known to benefit neurons and cell signaling. These superfoods are also linked to delays in mental decline.
4) DARK CHOCOLATE AND COCOA POWDER
Why people love dark chocolate is because it is downright delicious and good for you. It seats top of any brain foods’ list as it improves learning, memory, and focus. People, who consume foods high in flavonoids, including chocolate, score better on standardized cognitive tests. If you need a picker upper, do eat a piece of chocolate which contains low doses of caffeine that improves memory, mood, and concentration.
5) BRAIN-BOOSTING NUTS: WALNUTS, ALMONDS & HAZELNUTS, AND PEANUTS
Walnuts have a significantly high concentration of DHA, a type of Omega-3 fatty acid. All you need is a quarter cup of walnuts which provides nearly 100% of the recommended daily intake. People who add walnuts and walnut oil in their diets have lower resting blood pressure; while almonds and hazelnuts are two of the most concentrated sources of Vitamin E available. As for peanuts are believed to offer brain benefits as they are high in niacin ? 1/2 cup of peanuts offers about 50% of the RDA for niacin.
- Women: 425 mg per day
- Men: 550 mg per day
Eggs are a good source of vitamins which is important in maintaining memory and communication among brain cells. Those round good old yellow yolks are rich in vitamins B6, B12, folate, and choline. While many of us don’t get enough choline in our diets; eating eggs is an easy way to get choline.
7) HIGH IN VITAMIN C: ORANGES, BELL PEPPERS, GUAVA, KIWI, TOMATOES AND STRAWBERRIES
Studies show that drinking orange juice could play a vital role in improving brain-boosting and cognitive function. For one day serving size of Vitamin C, all you need is one medium orange. By eating sufficient amounts of vitamin C-rich foods can also help and protect you against age-related mental decline and Alzheimer’s disease. Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that helps fight off you getting sick and from free radicals that can damage your brain cells.
I save the best superfood for the last. Broccoli is a source of two vital nutrients that help improve memory and brain function. Vitamin K and Choline strengthens cognitive abilities improve memory. This wonder food also contains a number of compounds that is anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects, which may help protect the brain against damage.
It is scientifically proven all throughout our lifetime our brains have the opportunity to grow and form new neural connections. However, unless you feed your brain what it needs by way of your daily habits will greatly influence your memory — for either better or worse.
If you are serious with your brain health to help you boost your alertness, memory and mood, just follow this time and tested brain boosters.
Or, you can start here: PLANNING THE IDEAL HEALTHY DIET
Contributor Vanessa Lam’s hobbies include hip hop dance, musical theater, and cooking delicious food. When she is not writing, she can be found hanging out with friends, watching crime shows, and shopping. Vanessa is almost guaranteed to have finished her assignment before you have started yours, but as a master of time management, she went to class and came home for the party. Her motto? Stay classy!