The 9 Best Brain Foods for Studying & Focus

No matter how the student in your family is taking classes this year, it’s important to pair their studies with the right brain foods. To be in the best mental shape for homework and tests, loading up on foods that naturally support energy, focus, and concentration can mean great results in school.

To help sharpen thinking, remember to:

  • Get adequate sleep
  • Stay hydrated
  • Engage in some form of exercise for 30 or more minutes a day

Add in these nine brain foods and you’ll be helping students at any level to do their best.

Fruits & Vegetables Make Great Brain Foods

Fruits & Veggies are Packed With Vitamins & Minerals That Can Help With Focus for Studying

1. Blueberries

With tons of health benefits, blueberries may be the perfect food. Steeped with antioxidants and anthocyanin flavonoids, these little powerhouses help improve memory. Plus, according to studies blueberries actually increase learning capabilities, too.

2. Broccoli, Spinach, & Kale

Bursting with vitamins C and K, plus the added benefits of choline and lutein, these veggies have been shown to improve cognitive functioning.  Whether raw or lightly steamed, fresh or frozen, you can’t go wrong with leafy greens.

3. Avocados

Not only are avocados filled with “good fat” (mono-saturated fat to keep blood sugar levels in check) they can improve memory and concentration due to their vitamin K and folate content. Avocados also replenish your body with water-soluble vitamins B and C. 

Pass the guacamole!

Protein Helps Power the Brain

Healthy Proteins Provide Energy to Keep Students Going

4. Fatty Fish like Salmon, Trout, & Sardines

Fatty fish are bursting with omega-3 fatty acids. These acids are what the brains uses to build and repair brain cells. So, getting a good amount of omega-3s are essential for increased memory retention, the ability to focus, and overall learning.

5. Walnuts

Walnuts have a high concentration of DHA (an omega-3 fatty acid) that has been shown to protect brain health and improve cognitive performance. So, when your student is cramming for the big exam, keep a handful of walnuts handy to curb appetite and boost brain power.

6. Eggs

Eggs are more than just a great protein snack; they actually improve mood and memory. They’re full of nutrients that help the brain function, like:

  • Choline
  • Folate
  • Vitamin B6
  • Vitamin B12

Spices Can Improve Concentration While Studying

Adding Spices to Smoothies Can Boost the Brain Power of Your Meal or Snack

7. Turmeric

Whether you enjoy it in smoothies, spicy curries or when drinking turmeric tea, this golden spice has been linked to improved memory by increasing the brain hormone BDNF, which is a neuron strengthener and protector.

8. Rosemary

The oil from rosemary contains carnosic acid, which is said to:

  • Protect the brain from free radicals
  • Stimulate mental activity
  • Promote mental clarity

If rosemary in a smoothie isn’t your thing, try inhaling rosemary oil to boost concentration, focus, and memory like the ancient Greeks and Romans.

9. Dark Chocolate

So this isn’t technically a spice, but adding some dark chocolate to a smoothie can up the health factor (if you don’t overdo it). When it comes to chocolate’s health benefits, the darker the better. 

Dark chocolate improves blood flow to the brain and enhances memory because it’s packed with:

  • Flavonoids
  • Antioxidants
  • Caffeine

Chocolate also improves mood and increases positive feelings.  Who doesn’t smile when they eat a piece of chocolate?

Give yourself or your student an edge by including these nine powerhouse ingredients in their diet. Ounce for ounce, these nine foods have health benefits far beyond many foods typically found around the house.

Here’s to you and your family’s health!