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Brain food: power for your grey cells

Stress, tiredness and lack of concentration: if you spend the whole day doing "brain work" and are responsible for meeting targets or motivating others, at some point you're going to feel drained and worn out. Here you can find out about the foods you should be eating to stay in peak mental condition.



It's obvious that the body needs to be provided with the right kinds of nutrients if it is to stay strong and healthy - and so too does the mind. The brain uses up about a fifth of all the energy we absorb in the form of food and drink. You can boost your personal motivation, resilience and concentration by eating a varied diet containing the right balance of carbohydrates, proteins, fats and liquids.

It's easy to eat well
  • If you want to stay in top form all day, it's best to eat five meals.
  • Start the day with a power breakfast (e.g. muesli or wholemeal bread and jam with orange juice). In the morning, your energy reserves are at their lowest and your brain needs food to start the day.
  • Avoid excessive and fatty meals and snacks. They will only make you dull and tired because your digestive system will need almost all the energy they provide to digest them. In contrast, low-fat protein-rich foods will keep you alert and sharp because they are easy to digest, keep your blood sugar at a constant level and prevent a drop in performance. If you want a snack between main meals, try fresh or dried fruit, nuts, buttermilk, quark, yoghurt, wholemeal bread or crispbread.
  • You should aim to drink 1.5 to 2.5 litres of water or unsweetened tea per day. Staying hydrated means nutrients are transported efficiently around the body so that the brain gets the supply of blood - and hence oxygen - that it needs. Low fluid levels can lead to headaches, concentration problems and tiredness.
  • Take regular breaks. Go for a short walk in the fresh air to "cool your head" and re-energise.
Be careful with "brain boosters"
Taking pills and other kinds of medication to boost concentration, alertness and memory can damage your health and lead to long-term dependency. It's better not to start using them.

Make a contribution to your health
Keeping to a varied and healthy diet ensures that your brain gets all the nutrients it needs to operate at peak efficiency, helps you stay healthy in general, and boosts your sense of wellbeing. SWICA supports your personal efforts to stay in good health by offering attractive contributions under the COMPLETA PREVENTA and OPTIMA insurance plans. We look forward to giving you free no-obligation advice on our helpline 0800 80 90 80.

 

25.03.2015


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