Summertime is for bar-b-cue’s, beach trips and ice cream. When daydreaming about your toes in the sand and enjoying warm weather is common. Did you know researchers found productivity drops 20 percent in the summer? Now is the best time to eat brain foods to help you focus and boost productivity. Here are seven brain foods to help you check off tasks on your to-do list until your next vacation.
Where does Popeye the Sailor get his super powers? Spinach! Leafy green vegetables are packed with vitamins and nutrients. According to a study published in the Alzheimer’s and Dementia Journal, spinach has the ability to improve mental clarity. Having a spinach-rich diet improves learning capacity and is good for the gut. Registered dietitian Elisa Bremner says when the gut is healthy the brain works better. A healthy salad is quick to pack for lunch and is a cool refreshing option.
Cool blueberry smoothies, warm blueberry muffins, blueberry pancakes, blueberry doughnuts … yummy! Are you hungry yet? Blueberries are “also a good source of vitamin C, manganese and dietary fiber,” said Diane L. McKay, PhD, assistant professor at Tufts’ Friedman School. Researchers from Tufts' University found blueberry extract has the potential to increase short-term memory, which is essential to focus. Blueberries also help with navigational skills, balance and coordination. Add blueberries to your salad and get double the benefits at lunch.
Researchers found workers are 45 percent more distracted in the summer. This creamy green delicacy can be a topper for a healthy salad. Avocados are high in tyrosine an amino acid that is a perquisite to dopamine. Dopamine increases motivation, focus and attention. Avocados have tons of good fatty acids and help lower blood pressure due to their potassium. Low blood pressure helps the brain have high performance.
4) Green Tea
You’re right… tea is not exactly a food. But you may want a cup once you know how it helps your brain. According to the Dr. Oz show, green tea improves cognitive performance and memory. It supplies flavonoids and antioxidants for overall health and keeps calcium low to improve heart health.
5) Dark Chocolate
This may be the best excuse to satisfy your sweet tooth. According to the Dr. Oz show, studies have found cocoa flavanols help improve thinking and reduce blood pressure. The strongest impact you will get from cocoa flavanol is when it is in its minimally processed form. Dark chocolate snacks may now be more irresistible.
Low focus and concentration contributes to projects taking 13 percent more time to complete in the summer. An easy healthy snack of nuts can help give your brain protein, vitamins, minerals and omega-3 fatty acids. These acids positively impact neurons in your brain. Enjoy a variety of healthy nuts as a quick snack or a salad topper.
Sprinkle it in yogurt, on cereal or grab a healthy granola bar! Granola also has omega-3 fatty acids that are essential for proper brain function. Granola contains a handful of minerals for your health. Such as magnesium, phosphorus, zinc, copper, manganese and more. A healthy granola snack can help you stay on track at work.
Focus and productivity are important for success throughout the workday, especially in the summer. Healthy snacks are as important as office staples like pens and paper to keep your office running. Snacks are popular in the office environment today. Did you know Miller’s has over 500+ healthy snacks and beverage items for your breakroom?
Do you have a favorite healthy snack? Please share in the comments below.