Food for thought: the best brainfood for a solid study session

Food for thought: the best brainfood for a solid study session

Imagine studying at your favorite STUDY360-location, when suddenly your stomach starts to growl. You’re hungry! But what food should you eat during your exam period, and what nutrients are essential for your concentration and a positive attitude? We’re here to give you some answers.


How to sum up the exam period in three words: stress, stress, and some more stress. Unfortunately, that’s the case for a lot of students. Are you one of them and do you often feel tense, irritable and forgetful? Then you could probably use an extra dose of magnesium. Magnesium is a natural stress reductor that helps relax your muscles and boosts your immune system and memory. Very crucial during your study session! A high concentration of magnesium can be found in, for example, our favorite hipster food the avocado, but also in all kinds of nuts, such as cashews, Brazil nuts and almonds. Time to pay a little visit to De Noterij on the Paardenmarkt – a real nut heaven where you can find all the nuts of your dreams.

But here’s some extremely good news: cacao is also a super source of magnesium. That’s right, the occasional piece of delicious chocolate makes you a better student. Especially dark chocolate contains a high dose of magnesium (no less than 30 mg per 30 grams!) and therefore contributes to less stress and more energy. But make sure not to overdo it, because too much sugar is bad for your concentration.

Carbs: get energized

Energy is also crucial during your exam period. A high amount of energy can especially be found in carbohydrates, so make sure to eat healthy sources of carbs, such as whole-wheat products (little tip: replace that white sandwich bread with whole-wheat bread), quinoa and oatmeal. You’ll notice that not just your body but also your brain will feel more energized! Because tired and sleepy are words we just don’t want to hear during the exam period.

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Vreemdelingenmarkt © HLN

Vitamins: for the concentration

“Vitamins”. Could there be a word that sounds even more healthy? There’s a good reason for that, because vitamins are extremely important to live a healthy life and feel good in your own skin. The most important vitamins for a good study session are vitamin B and vitamin C.

Vitamin B (B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B8, B11, B12) is essential for the proper functioning of our nerve system, stress reduction, relaxation and mood. A vitamin B12 deficiency can sometimes be the cause of a lack of concentration or depressive feelings and thoughts, and since our body is not able to produce vitamin B, it’s extra important to eat enough of it! Vitamin B (B12) can be found in particular in animal products, such as poultry, milk and eggs, but if you are vegan you can get your vitamins by eating enough soy and meat substitutes that are enriched with vitamin B12. Vitamin C is important to boost our immune system and mood. It can be found in veggies and fruit, such as yellow kiwi’s, oranges, broccoli and peppers.

Just a tip: you can score the best fresh veggies and fruit at one of the weekly markets in Antwerp, such as the Biomarket on the Falconplein (every Sunday from 9am-16pm) or the Exotic market on the Theaterplein (every Saturday from 8am-16pm).

Fatty acids: protect those brain cells

Last but not least: omega 3 fatty acids are important for optimal brain functioning during your study session. Fatty acids protect your brain cells. You can find them especially in fish, such as salmon, mackerel and eel. But also (hello again) nuts and our little green friend the avocado contain a good dose of omega 3. Doesn’t sound bad, right?

And there’s that. Now you know what food is best for your body and brain you’re good to start your solid study session. You might want to check out one of our amazing STUDY360-locations (that’s right, we’re back!) or study at home. Rather study from the coziness of your own home? Then you might find these tips [link nog toevoegen] on how to separate your study space from your relaxation space interesting.