The summer term of the academic year is one typically dominated by exam stress for teenagers and adults at different points of their academic lives. We often hear about how fish is good for the brain, but have you wondered about how other elements of your diet can improve your game as you prepare for exams?
The brain is a complex organ that requires a steady supply of fats and glucose. Avoiding refined starches and sugars will help you to avoid the post-lunch ‘slump’ or the sugar highs and lows that can interfere with your concentration, your energy-levels and your sleep patterns, all of which is counterintuitive to good examination preparation.
Where paleo comes in
Many people know that the main feature of a paleo diet is food that is unrefined, unprocessed and as natural as possible. If you are not already a paleo-eater, whilst you are revising, try supplementing elements of your diet with these brain-boosting paleo alternatives:
Flaxseed, blueberry and coconut milk smoothie
Coconut oil is thought to improve cognitive function and is associated with preventing mental decline. Stick some in your blender with antioxidant-rich berries and flaxseeds, which are bursting with omega-3 oils, and treat yourself to a breakfast smoothie sure to set you up for a day of brainy brilliance.
Salmon and spinach salad
Unleash some more of that omega-3 with a pan-fried fillet of salmon served with wilted spinach or other dark leafy greens, to maximise your mineral intake. Magnesium in green vegetables is great for regulating stress, whilst selenium in the fish provides valuable antioxidants. Sprinkle polyphenol-rich walnuts over the dish to eliminate the free radicals that impair brain function.
Soothing herbal teas
Finish your day of revision off with a comforting herbal tea to send you off to a calm and restorative sleep. Camomile is known to combat anxiety, while the theanine in green tea combats free radicals and helps to stimulate improved brain function and concentration.
If you want to learn more about the science of a paleo diet and what you can achieve with it, why not download our Paleo Nutritionist Diploma Course?