Bright minds need the right nourishment to learn effectively, maintain concentration, enhance memory and power through marathon study sessions. And starting the day with a healthy, nutritious breakfast can help keep your energy levels up for everything else you do through the day - working, taking care of your family, volunteering, spending time with friends...
We've pulled together a few quick, healthy and tasty recipes which work well as brain-fuelling breakfasts or study snacks. Perfect for students or anyone who wants to nourish the grey matter while balancing a budget and a busy schedule.
How these puddings can power your learning
Chia seeds are nutritional powerhouses for both body and mind. They are packed with protein, contain all nine essential amino acids, are in rich good fats including Omega-3 and are high in antioxidants, vitamins, iron, copper, magnesium and zinc. These nutrients can aid your learning by preventing free radical oxidant damage, increasing brain function, improving memory and mood.
Antioxidant-rich berries can help keep your memory sharp and prevent oxidative damage to your grey matter.
Cinnamon is another antioxidant superstar; particularly high in polyphenol antioxidants, it can aid with neurotransmission and also aid memory.
Coconuts’ medium chain triglycerides have been shown to improve brain function. Plus the fat in coconut is vital to help your body absorb all the nutrients in the chia, cinnamon and berries, as well as keep you full through your lecture or study session - so you can concentrate on learning and keep your mind from wondering about the contents of the nearest vending machine.
- 2 tablespoons chia seeds
- 1 tablespoon shredded or desicated coconut
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 150mls milk of your choice (dairy, soy, almond, coconut)
- 1/4 cup fresh or frozen blueberries, raspberries and/or strawberries
- Place the chia, coconut, cinnamon and milk into a jar or watertight container, close the lid and shake hard for about 30 seconds (or you can use a regular glass and whisk or vigorously stir until well combined).
- Pop in the fridge for at least a couple of hours to allow time for the seeds to absorb the liquid and for a nice pudding-y consistency.
- Add berries on top and enjoy. Of course, you could substitute berries for banana, grated apple, nuts or whatever else you have on hand.
- I tend to make up four or five jars for breakfasts and snacks throughout the week. For kids’ lunch boxes, watertight reusable plastic containers are a safer option than glass jars.