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Perform at your cognitive best - Exam Nutrition Tips!

In many ways, the brain is like a car. It functions depending on what fuel we eat. 
Evidence suggests that a wide variety of veggies, fruits, wholegrain, legumes, nuts and seeds, dairy, lean meat and oily fish help reduce mood swings and improve cognitive performance.

Five Brain Foods Recommended to Optimise Study

1. Fatty Fish

Omega-3s build brain and nerve cells essential to ones’ learning and memory. Studies have proven Omega-3 is linked to improving moods which can indirectly impact ones’ study/exams. Fatty (oily) fish include; salmon, trout, tuna, Spanish mackerel and sardines.

Recommended portion size – One fillet three times per week. 

2. Nuts

Regularly eating nuts has been linked to having a sharper memory. Nuts contain a host of brain-boosting nutrients including healthy fats, antioxidants and vitamin E. All nuts are great for boosting brain activities, however walnuts are thought to be best as they also deliver Omega-3’s.

Recommended portion size – A small handful daily. 

3. Pumpkin Seeds

Suggested as being an excellent source of magnesium, iron and zinc, pumpkin seeds play an important role boosting ones’ cognitive performance.

Recommended portion size – A small handful daily. 

4. Eggs

Eggs are packed full of nutrients including vitamins B6, B12 and choline. B vitamins have multiple brain-boosting roles synthesising brain chemicals and regulating sugar levels. Choline is also an important micronutrient linked to improved mood regulation and memory

Recommended portion size – One to two eggs per day, or two eggs three times per week. 

5. Broccoli

Considered a rich source of vitamin K. Broccoli, like many veggies, contains powerful plant compounds called antioxidants. These properties protect the brain from radical damage, therefore improving ones’ mental performance.

Fact: Higher vitamin K intake has also been linked to better memory.  

Recommended portion size – Between half a cup or one cup every day. 

When it comes to exams, and generally in life, nutrition plays an essential role in cognitive performance and physical abilities. Ensure that you and your teens are receiving nutritional value by incorporating a range of these suggested five foods into you and your teens’ diet.

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