Concentrate on the court and in the classroom
Sports carnivals are demanding for students and teachers alike. Reaching for healthy food can help to keep your concentration up all day, whether it’s for coordinating competition or for teaching in the classroom. While carbohydrates provide the key fuel for active muscles and are essential for sports performance, certain carbohydrates can also boost your brain power during those long days supervising sports events.
If you have a full day ahead running a carnival, pack wholegrain sandwiches or wraps, high-fibre crackers like Ryvita, baked beans or hummus, plus plenty of fruit and vegies to keep your energy and enthusiasm peaking all the way to the finish line.
High-fibre grains and cereals sustain a steady stream of energy, rather than the rushes and crashes of sugary foods. High-fibre foods also help the body respond to stressful situations, such as cold weather or decision making when you’re tired or fatigued. Try to include wholegrains with most meals and snacks for successful sports carnivals.
The power of protein for peak performance
While we mainly think of protein for muscles and recovery in sports, it’s actually pivotal in staying alert too! Skinless chicken, tinned tuna, tofu, eggs, and low-fat dairy are examples of the proteins to include at mealtimes to keep your brain sharp, as are snacks like almonds, bananas, avocado, seeds, and low-fat cheese.
When it comes to game time, most lean and low-fat proteins can help improve focus, reaction time and decision making. When combined with wholegrains, these foods keep us full, energised, and alert for long periods. Healthy whole food sources of protein can help you ace your next serve, or your next exam.
Supper supplements superior sleep
At the end of the day (literally), getting enough sleep is essential for concentration, decision making, and energy levels, and good nutrition can improve sleep quality. Before bed, aim to have a small snack to refresh your brain for the following day. Reach for grains, low-fat dairy, fruit and berries, or even a small amount of dark chocolate. These contain carbohydrates and proteins that help promote sleep quality, which is great for people who need to be alert all day or who may not be getting enough rest.
For plenty of easy meal and snack ideas to boost your brain power, head along to crunchandsip.com.au. Don’t forget, these recipes are great for kids too, so share them with your students and school community.