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5 brain foods to keep you awake (and make you smarter)

On a Monday morning or after a night out with friends, staying focused in class can feel impossible. You yawn, your eyes feel tired and the desk starts to look increasingly attractive as a temporary bed of sorts. It’s time to reach out for some of your brain’s favorite attention and memory-boosters and wake up again.

So before next Monday’s class – whether back home or in an EF school somewhere on the other side of the world – whip up a blueberry shake, drink a cup of coffee, eat some nuts or go nuts and eat a baked potato for lunch. Your brain and your teacher will thank you, trust us.

Our top 5 brain foods:

1. A strong cup of coffee

Every student knows that the local barista that makes that daily morning cup is their best friend. Coffee is really good for waking you up and keeping you focused for a short amount of time, but drink too much and you’ll feel jittery and ill.

2. A fruit shake

Preferably with super healthy blueberries and with natural sugars in the form of glucose, a fruit shake can provide a short-term memory boost in addition to vitamins and minerals that your whole body needs. Overdo it and you’re likely to feel tired soon after.

3. A handful of dark chocolate pieces and nuts

They’re as brain-boosting as anything (dark chocolate even has some caffeine) and they’re anti-aging too.

4. Fish and baked potatoes for lunch

We know, we know – they’re not the most attractive items on the menu, but your brain loves both. Salmon and other fatty fish have loads of Omega-3 fats that boost memory and slow your brain’s decline as you age, while potatoes provide steady energy that your brain really needs (it takes up 20% of your body’s energy!)

5. Pumpkin seeds

They’re full of zinc, iron and minerals that help transport oxygen to the brain, and nerve cells to communicate and boost your brain power. A great cheap and healthy snack.

Bonus tip: Sleep enough and get enough time outside in the sun and fresh air – both improve memory and help you form new ideas so you’ll remember more of what you learned! This is especially important before an exam.

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