Often, people experience some form of stress before sitting for a difficult examination. There are foods that when you eat, you will improve your memory and concentration levels during an examination.
Here is a list of four foods that you can take before that tough exam:
The most important proteins that you could take are seafood and oil-rich fish. With these proteins, you will automatically nail that NBME Step 2 exam and pass with flying colors and get your medical license. So, how can they help? Seafood has a long Omega-3 chain which is known to be great at enhancing concentration levels and improving brain function. Given that approximately 8% of your brain is made up of Omega-3 fats, it is necessary that you eat these portions often say twice a week particularly when you are a student. But, what is the source of these brain-enhancing compounds? You can get Omega-3 in from salmon, fresh tuna, sardines, mackerel, trout, or fish fingers. Some interesting ideas for that Omega-3 rich breakfast include smoked salmon and waffles, smoked salmon baked eggs with avocado, smoked trout with eggs, or a tuna omelet. In case you do have time to make these savory meals, you could use Omega-3 supplements instead. When you are vegetarian, you can get Omega-3 from vegetable sources like seeds (flax seeds), hemp protein, and nuts.
2. Fruits and vegetables
What do these fruits and veggies do for you? They function to slow the process of digestion in your body so that your brain remains active. They also ensure that energy is released in small amounts to keep you going for longer. This way, your brain does not easily tire during your exam. Dark fruits and vegetables are known to be high in antioxidants which are healthy and essential on the morning of your exams. How do antioxidants help you? Research has shown that antioxidants have cognitive benefits. Other studies by the School of Public Health at Harvard show that you can get antioxidants from whole foods like berries, red onions, prunes, apples, pecans, or artichokes. So, on the morning of your exam, you could have a bowl of mixed dark fruits or incorporate them on the side as an accompaniment. For the dark veggies like kale or spinach, you can make them as sautéed vegetables and have them with a sandwich.
Food rich in carbohydrates also has high sugar content which is used to power the brain. However, not all sugars will help you! For example, sugars from soda burn up fast hence they do not supply you with the steady energy that you need for a difficult exam. For this reason, you need to get complex carbohydrates from sources such as whole grains, beans, or legumes. These foods are capable of giving you twice the amount of energy that you need to power up your brain. So, what breakfast ideas can you explore for that exam morning? You could take a bowl of whole-grain cereal with three slices of whole-grain bread to produce the sugars that you require. You can also take some wholemeal pasta with veggies or some porridge to enhance your blood sugar levels. These carbs will give you the energy source that you need to keep you hyperactive during your exam.
Fluids like water are also good because they will leave you hydrated and focused all through. You ought to know that slight dehydration is enough to reduce your alertness, make you fatigued, reduce your concentration, and cause you headaches. You can start your morning by taking at least two glasses of water or some fruit tea. If the examiner allows, you could take a bottle of water into an exam room to keep you hydrated for the exam duration. Other fluids that you can take to provide you with the same effect are coffee and tea. You need to avoid energy and sweet fizzy drinks because they can make you experience energy peaks and troughs which are bad for you during an exam.
There is no doubt that food plays a critical role during an examination. The trick is to know what kind of proteins, fruits and veggies, carbohydrates, and fluids that will help enhance your brain activity. If you have that difficult exam coming up, you need to try out some of these foods, and you will notice the difference in your performance.
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