Kids aren’t the only ones who use their brains all day. With meetings, deadlines and errands to run, it’s hard for anyone to work good-for-you snacks into their hectic schedules. So it’s important to make those snacks count and keep your brain going as well as your body! Check out some of these great brain foods for starting the day off right and keep it going until quitting time.
Flickr user stevendepolo
You thought this was gonna be a list of boring gross “health” foods? Think again. These yummy fruits are technically high in fats, but they’re monounsaturated fats, which actually assists in blood flow around the body (including the brain), and in turn helps lower blood pressure.
Flickr user mustetahra
Here’s another one that’s easy to love. You’ve probably heard that blueberries have antioxidants, but do you actually know what they do? They’re like little soldiers that fight against free radicals inside your body, and have also been shown to help maintain brain functions like memory and motor coordination. And blueberries have the most antioxidants of just about any other food.
While fresh blueberries are obviously the best way to go, they’re not always conducive to eating on the go during a busy day. Try them in a snack bar or even a breakfast cookie.
3. Whole Grains
Flickr user jdeeringdavis
There are really not many bad things to be said about whole grains. They help your body in a myriad of ways, only one of which is brain function. Whole grains contain glucose, which helps provide energy to the body and brain.
You probably think “sugar” when you hear glucose, and technically that’s correct – but there are different forms of glucose, and the glucose provided by whole grains is way better. And whole grains release glucose slowly throughout the day to keep you going, instead of all at once, like from a candy bar or can of soda.
Flickr user DeSegura89
Nuts are another natural source of energy that won’t let you down later on. And yes, they do have some fats, but they’re far better for you than some greasy potato chips or peanut M&Ms. And nuts are so easy to pack as the perfect mid-afternoon snack to power through until quitting time—or for the kiddos to munch on during the carpool to soccer practice.
When you think healthy protein, you probably think of beef or chicken, right? Well we’re not gonna talk about those. I’m talking about this stuff.
That’s right, fish is one of the best sources of protein there is. And fatty fish (like salmon) is full of omega-3s that help with memory loss and keeping your brain in tip-top shape.
Need some inspiration? We made an incredible recipe with rosemary and lemon that’ll knock your socks off.
6. Olive Oil
Flickr user trix0r
Another one of those “good fats,” as well as one of the best brain foods. Olive oil has a ton of antioxidants (which you probably remember from our blueberry discussion a minute ago) that protect your brain from free radicals. Vitamins E and K are also found in olive oil, which protect your memory and even improve your processing speeds.
Want to test it out? Try some of this Roasted Pepper and Artichoke Bruschetta by Milas Foods.
Flickr user UnknownNet Photography
There’s a reason why eggs are so popular for breakfast. They’re a perfect source of protein to get your body (and brain) raring to go for the day. And the choline in the egg yolks helps with memory, to help the kids ace those tests right off the bat.
What else do you think are the best brain foods ever? Tell us in the comments below!