Professional players main tool is their brain. It’s important to be able to process a lot of information and thereafter, based on the information, be able to make a decision and react fast enough. You also need to have good mechanic skills, memory, stress control and be able to focus for many hours.
Some of these skills can be practiced, but others might need little outside help and that’s where the food comes in.
The brain requires more nutrition from food than the rest of the body combined. That’s why if you skip a meal or two you will have difficulty concentrating, you will feel tired and perhaps get mood swings. Good food will help keep your brain at maximum efficiency, improve your overall health, help you perform specific mental tasks and also maintain a good mental health.
So here is a list of some “brain food” and their benefits!
Blueberries — They are anti inflammatory, have protecting qualities against oxidative stress, help with memory and they appear to decrease the deterioration of brain function in Alzheimer’s. This “boostberry” will literally strengthen your brain!
Whole grain — Carbohydrates are transformed into glucose which is easily absorbed in the blood and provides the brain, nervous system and muscles with energy. Whole grains has low GI which means it takes longer to break down to glucose and therefore provide the body with energy for longer time and will keep you mentally alert all day. Also, oats are a great source of zinc and magnesium which are minerals that strengthen our ability to concentrate and lack of them can lead to tiredness, depression and maybe even mood swings.
Omega-3 and Omega-6 — Can be found in oily fish like salmon and mackerel, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, chia seeds, flax seeds, eggs, spinach and extra virgin olive oil. The body can’t make these essential fatty acids which means they must be obtained through diet. The brain need them to build healthy cell membranes and improve nerve transmissions, amongst other things. It can also improve your memory, mood, help manage stress, protect against depression, anxiety and lower the risk of heart diseases. But there is also a risk to get too much Omega-6 because it can be found in unhealthy food as well, such as potato chips, pizza and processed food, and therefore can have a negative effect on the body and brain.
Broccoli — Is overall a good source of fibre and protein but it’s also packed with antioxidants and vitamin K which can help with memory, enhance cognitive functions and protect again brain damage.
Turmeric — One of the most powerful natural inflammatory agents. This super food It can keep the immune system healthy, balancing blood sugar and your mood. Turmeric can also help you process information and stay alert due to its positive impact on the brain’s oxygen intake.
Tomatoes, oranges, strawberries, beets, carrots, kale, cabbage, celery, nuts, green tea, dark chocolate, coconut oil, beans are foods that also have a positive impact on the brain and overall health.