With summer in full swing, it's no wonder you get distracted at work by gazing longingly out the window. But thankfully there are foods you can snack on during the day to help keep daydreaming to a minimum. The next time you get the urge to eat junk food, opt for these healthful brain boosters instead.
Whole-Grain Cereal and Orange Juice
Start your day out right by eating whole grain cereal and drinking a glass of orange juice for breakfast; both are rich in folic acid (also known as folate), which has been shown to contribute to better memory and faster information processing. For midday munching, you can get folate from foods like soybeans, green peas, broccoli, and lentils.
Cauliflower and Peanuts
A recent study done by McLean Hospital, an affiliate of Harvard Medical School, suggests that taking a minimum of 500mg of citicoline supplements a day can help boost mental energy and efficacy. Citicoline, a natural substance found in all living cells, can also be ingested via cauliflower and peanuts-both are sources of choline, which is converted to citicoline in the brain.
Broccoli, Sprouts, and Spinach
When ordering your salad at lunchtime, be sure to include these veggies; a 25-year Harvard Medical School study of more than 13,000 women showed that participants who ate cruciferous and leafy greens retained their memory best. The more you eat of these vegetables, the better!
Berries, Grapes, and Plums
In terms of fruit, berries have some of the highest concentrations of antioxidants. Plus, they're packed with anthocyanin, a phytochemical that may help reverse age-related memory loss and protect against the breakdown of brain cells. Quercetin, another phytochemical, produces similarly beneficial results. Blueberries, red apples, and darker-colored grapes (red, black, and purple) are superpowerful, as they contain both of these flavonoids.
Salmon and Sardines
Numerous studies have revealed the memory-boosting properties of omega-3 fatty acid and certain fish-namely salmon, mackerel, sardines, and herring-are full of omega-3s. Eating these kinds of fish at least once a week will keep you thinking younger-three years younger, to be precise (a study by Rush University Medical Center in Chicago found that men and women who ate fish at this frequency had memory functions equivalent to a person three years their junior). Not a fan of fish? Consider taking fish-oil supplements instead.