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Researchers Find 8 Superfoods That Drastically Boost Your Brainpower At Work

Researchers Find 8 Superfoods That Drastically Boost Your Brainpower At Work

The daily grind of a full-time job requires an enormous amount of energy. Get up. Go to work. And work for 8-10 hours. Do this 5 days a week (sometimes more). That’s 40-50 hours a week that you are expected to perform at a high level.

The question is: How are you fueling yourself? Unfortunately, the daily grind forces many people to take up a “let me just grab something quick” game plan. This often equates to unhealthy eating habits at work.

The reality is that the food you eat has a significant impact on your brainpower and productivity. As a result, it is imperative that you do some research and educate yourself on the nutritional value of the food your are eating.

Many foods are bad. Many foods are good. And there there are those foods that are in fact superfoods. These are the foods that boost productivity and brain power. Does increased brain power and productivity sound like something that would benefit you at work? Of course it would which is why you should absolutely incorporate these types of foods in to your diet.

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1. Water

water

    Water is the element of life. Everyone has heard the importance of 8 glasses of water and yet not everyone practices this. In fact, studies show that nearly 75% of Americans suffer from chronic dehydration. This comes as more of a shock when you consider that more than 70% of the body is made up of water. Every single bodily function depends on water to function smoothly. It is like oil for a machine. If you do not drink enough water throughout the day to replenish lost fluids, your brain will suffer the consequences. Failing to drink enough can lead to daily fatigue and headaches. This is the last thing you want at work. Instead, be sure to get plenty of water so that you can operate with a clear mind and remain productive.

    2. Salmon

    grilled salmon

      According to the US National Library of MedicineNational Institutes of Health, the brain is about 60% fat and most of that is the omega-3 fatty acid DHA. As a result, fatty fishes are great “brain food” and salmon might be king of them all. Salmon is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which are vital for improving memory and mental performance, the pillars of productivity.

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      3. Berries

      Berry

        Anti-oxidant rich foods, such as berries, are great for increasing memory. Obviously, this would help improve memory function in the workplace. This would also work to prevent the onset of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s further down the road. In general, the darker the berry, the higher its anti-oxidant property. This means more productivity-boosting ingredients.

        4. Avocados

        avocados

          In addition to their great taste, avocados also serve as vital food for the brain. Avocados are an incredible source of healthy fats and nutrients that enhance blood flow, stimulate brain cells, and improve overall focus. Remember, productivity is all about keeping consistent blood flow to the brain.

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          5. Nuts

          Nuts

            You would be nuts not to include nuts in your diet. Nuts are an excellent source of protein and healthy fats that your body absolutely needs. They are rich in amino acids, antioxidants, and Vitamin E. This translates to a natural increase in brain performance and productivity that you need to make it through the workday. Studies show that nuts also contain Vitamin B-12 which is known to contribute to higher brain functions. All it takes it a handful a day!

            6. Bananas

            Bananas

              A banana is one of the best resources of glucose, which the body uses for energy. Just one banana contains the daily amount of glucose that your body needs. It is a far healthier option than your typical ” office vending machine food” packed with carbs and processed sugars. You need energy to remain productive and it’s no secret that bananas are often referred to as nature’s energy bars. Furthermore, according to an article on livestrong.com, “a few slices of banana are a great pre-bedtime snack” due to its tryptophan content. Sleep is vital to brain function and work performance.

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              7. Dark Chocolate

              Dark Chocolate

                Dark chocolate is the “guilty pleasure” of brain foods because in addition to being a superfood, it also satisfies that sweet tooth that we all have. In addition to improving overall focus, the caffeine content in dark chocolate also translates to greater energy. Authoritynutrition.com lists improved brain function as one of the many health benefits associated with dark chocolate. One study of healthy volunteers showed that 5 days of consuming high-flavanol cocoa improved blood flow to the brain.

                8. Spinach

                Spinach

                  Although Popeye ate Spinach to get stronger, it probably made him smarter too. According to an article on The Huffington Post, eating just one serving of spinach a day could make your brain 11 years younger by slowing down the process of age-related cognitive decline. This is due to its high Vitamin K content. This same article sites a 5 year long study that ultimately proved that those who consumed 1-2 servings of spinach a day had far better cognitive abilities than those who did not. Simply put, a serving of spinach a day will turn your brain in to a powerhouse of production.

                  Preparing your brain for optimal performance is simply a matter of incorporating the right foods in to your diet. All 8 of these superfoods can be found at your local grocery store and can easily be prepared. If you are a working professional who is in need of improved mental clarity and a boost in productivity then you should absolutely make it a habit of incorporating these foods in to your diet.

                  Featured photo credit: Salmon/Andrea Pokrzywinski via flickr.com

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                  Last Updated on May 22, 2019

                  10 Simple Morning Exercises That Will Make You Feel Great All Day

                  10 Simple Morning Exercises That Will Make You Feel Great All Day

                  There are lots of studies that show if you do some exercise in the morning, you will be in a better mood all day long. You will have more energy and you will certainly be a better colleague, friend or partner.

                  One psychologist at Duke University has researched the effects of exercise on depressed patients and he has come to the conclusion that exercise has a definite role in treating this condition and has an important role in preventing people from relapsing.[1] According to the New York Times, scientists have now established that exercise also boosts your brain power.[2]

                  In addition, there are studies from the Appalachian State University which show that blood pressure can be reduced by doing regular morning exercise.[3]

                  Here are 10 simple morning exercises that will help you feel great the whole day long. You can include some of them in your morning exercise routine or do them all at home without having to enrol in a gym. Consult your doctor before starting any form of exercise routine if you are new to this.

                  1. Cat Camel Stretch

                  Stretching exercises are useful for muscle toning and also preventing arthritis. They can either be dynamic or static.

                  Dynamic ones such as the cat camel stretch, are particularly useful for doing other exercises in the morning. They are also beneficial at other times of the day, especially after long periods of sedentary work. This one is great for spinal flexibility and is a good warm up exercise.

                  Kneel down on all fours. Start by rounding your back just like a camel so that your head will try to meet your pelvis. This is the camel position. Then lower and lift your head so that your lower back is arched. This is the cat position. Do these movements slowly and smoothly. About 4 or 5 times.

                  Here’s a video to guide you through:

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                  2. Go for a Walk or a Run

                  This is better done outside so that you can connect with nature but running inside on a treadmill is almost as good. You can time yourself and increase length and time according to your fitness program.

                  Always have new goals to reach. Start with brisk walking and work up to running. At my age, I am still walking!

                  The health benefits are considerable. You can build stronger bones and you can help to maintain your weight.

                  Also, you are helping your heart to stay healthy and keeping your blood pressure low.

                  Learn more about the benefits of running here: 8 Benefits of Running 5 Minutes Every Day You Didn’t Know

                  3. Jumping Jacks

                  Michelle Obama is a great fan of this exercise and has become “Jumper in Chief.”[4] They are great for cardiovascular health and also for toning muscles especially the calves and the deltoids.

                  Stand with feet together. Jump while spreading your arms and legs. Return to first position and keep going! You can start with doing these for 1 minute and then gradually build up to the number you are comfortable with. Here’s how:

                  4. Abductor Side Lifts

                  Watch the video below to see how to do this exercise. These muscles are important because you use them everyday to run, get into the car or onto and off a bicycle. They are very important also for your core stability and prevent the pelvis from tilting.[5]

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                  Do about 10 to 15 raises for each side like this:

                  5. Balancing Table Pose

                  This is a classic yoga pose. It benefits the spine, balance, memory and concentration.

                  Start with the table pose (hands and knees). Breathe in before starting each movement. As you exhale, raise your left leg parallel to the floor as you raise the right arm, also parallel to the floor. Breathe in as you lower arm and leg. Repeat for the other side. 10 repetitions on each side is a good starting point.

                  ablab

                    6. Leg Squats

                    Not just legs are involved but also hips and knees.

                    Stand with your feet a bit further out from your hips. Arms are out in front of you. Then lower yourself as if you wanted to sit down until you reach a 90 degree angle. You can go down further if you want to. Then return to the starting position. Repeat 15 times for 2 sets for beginners.

                    The benefits are that these exercises help with knee stability and can benefit the leg muscles such as quadriceps, hamstrings and calves.[6]

                    7. Push Ups

                    You start lying down (face down) but with your body held up at arm’s length. Your hands should be in line with your shoulders. Breathe in as you lower your body. That is fairly easy. Now, as you exhale, you have to get back up to the starting position.

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                    An easier version to start with is to bend your legs at the knees so you do not have to lift your whole body.

                    Beginners may take up to a month to be able to do 100 push ups so you will have to start with a very small number and gradually increase it.

                    This exercise is great for strengthening the chest, shoulders and the triceps. It is a great strengthening exercise for many muscle groups. In fact, most muscles from the toes to the shoulders are being used.

                    8. Bicycle Crunches

                    There are numerous crunch exercises targeting the abs. The bicycle crunch is a variation where you work more muscle groups. Aim for 15 to 20 reps to start off with.

                    Watch the video to see how this is done correctly:

                    9. Lunges

                    Stand with feet shoulder width apart. Place your hand on your hips. Take one giant step forward with the right leg. Make sure the knee does not go too far forward, that is, past your toes. The left knee will go down to almost floor level. Alternate the legs as you go on.

                    Try to do a set of between 8 and 12 reps for each leg. It is important to allow for a day of rest, so this exercise should be done on alternate days, especially if you are using weights.

                    This exercise is great for strengthening and toning the quadriceps, glutes and hamstrings.

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                    10. Bicep Curls

                    You can do this sitting down so if you spend a lot of time on the phone, this is a great exercise to do.

                    Choose suitable dumbbells or another household object that you can easily hold. Sit down with the dumbbell in your hand. You need to sit forward a bit so that your triceps can lean on your thigh to give you support.

                    Then bring the weighted arm up to shoulder length and then down again. Exhale as you lift the weight and inhale as you lower it.

                    Here’re some important notes before you start doing this exercise:

                    Try to do one or two sets of about ten repetitions for each arm and then switch arms.

                    These exercises are really useful for toning the arm muscles.[7] In addition, they can strengthen and tone the brachioradialis muscle located in the forearm. These are the muscles we use to pick up things when we flex the arm at the elbow so we use these muscles countless times a day.

                    You may have to build in a rest day for the heavier exercises, numbers 6–10. On the rest days, you can do gentler stretching exercises and also some walking or running.

                    Morning exercise is not only a great mood booster, but will help you keep your weight down and also sleep better![8] Start including one or some of these exercises in your morning routine!

                    More Articles About Exercises for Beginners

                    Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

                    Reference

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