It’s finally finals week at Cypress College and students are in a rush to cram in as much as they can to make sure they end the semester on a good note.
In an effort to get in as much studying time as they can some students may tend to skip meals although eating is an important step in keeping the brain ready for the exam. Most people have heard that breakfast is the most important meal of the day and this is true especially for test takers. Even those who normally skip breakfast should attempt to fit this meal in this week because the brain needs the energy from food to work.”Finals weeks means that I have to spend all the time I have studying,” said Henry Ngo, 25, Nursing major. “I barely even have time to sleep, let alone eat!”
After intense study sessions your brain will thank you for the energy it receives. Without these nutrients your brain will be fatigued and will not perform the best it can. There are certain food items that are better than others to fuel the brain such as protein-rich foods like eggs, oatmeal, nuts, and yogurt. Oats and eggs are known as energy giving foods and contain a nutrient called choline which is thought to help cognitive performance and improve memory. Here are some quick recipes for those who are thinking about skipping breakfast to squeeze in extra study time.
This recipe takes very little time to prepare and can be made overnight so that you don’t have to take extra time in the morning to prepare breakfast. It can also be prepared in a mason jar or any other portable container so that you can grab it on the go and eat right before the exam if needed. It is also easy to adapt to one’s personal taste as you can top it with whichever toppings you want and include extra brain-food toppings. Here is the basic recipe to start with:
1/3 cup of oats
1/3- 1/2 cup of milk (almond milk adds extra flavor and health benefits)
1/3 cups of yogurt (Greek yogurt makes it extra thick and is a healthier option)
(option to flavor with vanilla, cinnamon, honey, syrup etc.)
Top with whatever toppings you’d like such as fruits (bananas, berries) or nuts.
-Now just pop in to the refrigerator and enjoy the next morning.
BuzzFeed offers 15 different recipes for those wanting to take their oats up a notch.
Chia Seed Pudding
Chia seeds have been all the rage lately for those who are seeking healthy options to add in to their regular diet. You might have seen people drink these in their water and wondered what those little black seeds were that were floating around. Chia seeds contain calcium, protein, fiber, and healthy omega-3 fats just to name a few benefits. This chia seed pudding can also be made overnight ensuring for a fast trip out the door. The seeds absorb up to three-times the amount of liquid compared to its size and when mixed with milk it makes almost a pudding like texture and tastes almost like dessert!
“I used to just add it to my water because I heard it’s good for me but never knew I could use it for breakfast,” said Vy Nguyen, 24, biochemistry major at University of Irvine.
1 cup of milk (I prefer almond milk or coconut milk for more benefits)
3 tablespoons of chia seeds
1 tablespoon of honey or a few drops of vanilla (I use vanilla flavored almond milk and so don’t really need extra flavoring)
Mix all of these into a container once more and cover and refrigerate to set overnight.
In the morning I like to just quickly wash different types of berries and top it off and eat in on the go. Here are some more intricate recipes for those wanting to experiment.
This one may be the one of the most obvious and simplest but smoothies can incorporate lots of different nutrients from fruits, different types of liquids (such as milk, almond milk, green tea, etc.), and added nutrients such as protein powder. To make this a quick breakfast cut up and portion fruits the night before and keep it together so that in the morning all you have to do is pour it all in the blender and blend while you finish getting ready to leave.
“I always make a smoothie in the morning before I head to work early morning,” said Tim Swift, 28, professional trainer at LA Fitness. “I get home late after a day of physically strenuous work and so I have precut fruit in the fridge all the time. My favorite combination is mango, strawberries, and bananas. If I feel like rewarding myself I’ll even add a little whipped cream to it.”