Exam & Nutrition

How to Nourish Your Child for Better Exam Performance?

Some of the most common dos and don’ts for child appearing for exams include;

  • Start your day early
  • Read regularly
  • Study persistently till exams
  • Prepare study note
  • Do not skip topics
  • Revise as many times possible
  • Do not panic
  • Focus on core materials
  • Don’t study more than 2 hours at a stretch
  • Practice papers of previous exams
  • Use visual cues for easy memorisation
  • Sleep Well

“It is possible to store the mind with a million facts and still be entirely uneducated.” Alec Bourne

Exams are brain game.

They are stressed, feel lonely, anxious. This mental status influences their brain and therefore performance.

No one talks about the food they should eat during exam days.

What you eat make who you are. In exam time many students study so hard that they even don’t eat regular meals. They don’t have time for exercise.

Students and parents are obsessed with the study, and peer pressure that no one even thinks about nutrition and nourishment.

Irish nutrition and dietary institute (INDI) recommend that the right food and drink can energize your system, improve your alertness and sustain you through long exam hours. On the other hand, the wrong dietary choices can make you feel sluggish and jittery.

Shaniese Alston who was a student assistant in the Office of New Media of the State University of New York wrote; “When 16 college students were tested on attention and thinking speed, then fed a five-day high-fat, low-carb diet heavy on meat, eggs, cheese, and cream and tested again, their performance declined.

The students who ate a balanced diet that included fruit and vegetables, however, held steady.

When you study, your brain consumes glucose, so take a five-minute break every hour to let your body produce more fuel for your studying. Eating a healthy snack is very beneficial and can make a significant difference (almonds, fruit, and yogurt are good choices.”

Here is a list of things to eat and do when your child is preparing for exams. Do not panic. They need time to relax, rejuvenate, refresh for better performance.


Exam & Food

  • Hydration:

INDI suggest Dehydration can make you feel lethargic, irritable and tired. Worst of all, it affects your concentration which may make it more difficult to study and perform to your best.

Keep a glass of fluid (fruit juice, herbal teas, water) within easy reach while studying and take a bottle of water into the exam (if you can).

  • Regular Breakfast:

Dietician Sue Atkinson recommends; Try to include wholegrain carbohydrate at each meal rather than high sugar foods and drinks to maintain a stable blood sugar level during the day.

High sugar foods give an initial boost of energy but this is not maintained and can lead to subsequent low energy, lethargy, and low mood.

Wholegrain carbohydrates include porridge oats, wholemeal bread, wholegrain pasta, brown rice. Potatoes, beans, and pulses also help to provide stable blood sugar levels.

Handpicked related post: 6 Foods Can Make Your Children Diseased Adult

  • Eating at Bedtime:

BBC blog Iwonder writes; Avoid heavy meal at night. Have meal 3 to 4 hours before sleep. Then have a small snack such as a bowl of high-fiber cereal like porridge just before bedtime.

If you need sweetener with cereal, go for dried fruit rather than sugar. Avoid tea, coffee, cocoa before bedtime. Go for warm milk for better sleep.

  • Nutritious Food:

    • Green tea is with antioxidants which boots concentration
    • Fresh fruit
    • Walnuts, pistachio, cashews, almonds, seeds like pumpkin, watermelon are known to brain-friendly. A 2015 study from UCLA linked higher walnut consumption to improved cognitive test scores.
    • According to Harvard health; Leafy greens such as kale, spinach, collards, and broccoli are rich in brain-healthy nutrients like vitamin K, lutein, folate, and beta carotene.

“I pay the schoolmaster, but it is the schoolboys who educate my son.” Ralph Waldo Emerson


Exam & Playing

  • Exercise:

Research says that just 20 minutes of cardio can improve your memory. It could be dancing, jogging, walking, or swimming. It will increase energy level and reduce the effects of stress. Very important!

  • Yoga:

Researchers report that a single, 20-minute session of Hatha yoga significantly improved participants’ speed and accuracy on tests of working memory and inhibitory control. These two measures help maintain focus and take in, retain and use new information.

Handpicked related post: 11 immense benefits of Surya Namaskar (Sun Salutation)

“I have never let my schooling interfere with my education. ” Mark Twain

Rest :

Exam & Rest

  • Sleep:

Not getting enough sleep may negatively affect your memory and slow your responses. Experts believe memory neurons that are responsible for converting short-term memories into long-term ones work most effectively when we are asleep.

There’s evidence that students who sleep for seven hours a night do on average 10% better than those who get less sleep.

  • Destress before bedtime:

Allow the child to relax for some time before sleep. This distresses him and helps in better sleep. Better sleep is good for better retention of what is studied.

  • Avoid Night Reading:

Those who are studying for the whole night, it’s a bad idea. Based on a 2008 study by Pamela Thacher, Associate Professor of Psychology at St. Lawrence University, all-nighters impair reasoning and memory for as long as four days.  As a result, you will receive lower grades.

  • What to read before Sleep:

According to Dan Taylor, director of a sleep-and-health-research lab at the University of North Texas review the toughest material right before going to bed the night before the test. It makes it easier to recall the material later.

  • Wake up at regular time:

Another good news is Dan Taylor says; don’t wake up earlier than usual to study; this could interfere with the rapid-eye-movement sleep that aids memory

Do not panic and make your child panic. Be normal, eat healthily, rest enough and exercise. These help to energize the brain power of your child. Unnecessary hype of exam many a time results in below potential performance.

& remember, at the end of the day;

“Education is what remains after one has forgotten what one has learned in school. ” John Dryden

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