November 30

10 Foods That Help You Focus and Stay Alert

The ability to focus on solving problems and performing cognitive tasks accurately as well as quickly is very important for successful work and stressless life. The two main factors that help our brain maintain cognitive processes are the proper energy supply and the speed of transmitting information by the brain cells – neurotransmitters. Fortunately, there’s a powerful means – a well-thought over nutritional plan – that enhances the main brain functions. The basis of this diet is nutrient-dense foods, mainly plant-based, which have brain-stimulating properties. Here is the list of such foods:

  1. Sugar.
    Glucose, which is processed in the body from sugars and carbohydrates, is a potent source of fuel for the brain. Although it’s better to get glucose from natural sources, e.g., fruits, a cup of some sweet drink can provide short-term increase in alertness and concentration.
  2. Leafy greens.
    Vegetables like kale, spinach, and collard greens, are full of antioxidants, fiber, as well as folate, one of vitamin B-complex. They sharpen your focus and improve memory.
  3. Avocado.
    This is a great source of monounsaturated fats, including Omega 3 fatty acids, which are responsible for the work of neurotransmitters in the brain. These substances also prevent inflammation and enhance the better functioning of the vessels.
  4. Blueberries.
    These are good boosters to focusing and decision-making due to their antioxidant properties as well as high content of quality fiber. A cup of them provides 14% of daily value of this nutrient, and antioxidants promote better supply of oxygen to the brain.
  5. Nuts.
    Incomparable sources of minerals, vitamins, healthy fats, and fiber, nuts such as peanuts, walnuts, almonds, as well as pistachios, fuel the brain. They prevent central nervous system disorders. Antioxidants fight the inflammation in the brain and vessels, promoting better concentration and improving long-term and short-term memory.
  6. Dried fruits.
    The concentration of minerals, fiber, and vitamins makes dried fruits an invaluable supplement for snacks to have during working hours. Rich in carbohydrates, dried apricots, apples, coconuts, and especially dates provide constant supply of energy to the brain, helping focus on problems better.
  7. Beetroot juice.
    According to recent studies, beetroot juice speeds up the processes of thinking and making decisions, as well as supports the ability to focus. The juice is abundant in nitrates, which, interacting with enzymes found in saliva, produce nitric oxide. This chemical substance promotes better supply of oxygen to the brain.
  8. Green tea.
    Caffeine and theanine, found in green tea, boost the activity of neurotransmitters in the central nervous system, improving the ability to focus. However, they show only short-term effect.
  9. Water.
    Dehydration is dangerous for the body, and especially for the brain. This state slows down all processes and impairs the brain functions, including concentration, alertness, as well as attention.
  10. Caffeine.
    Coffee and chocolate, the best natural sources of caffeine, have strong and weak points. They energize you and help your brain focus better, but for a short period of time. Taking them in high quantities exhausts the nervous system.