Students are about to start taking their End of Grade and End of Course tests in Eastern Carolina. They've been filling their heads with knowledge all year, and parents can help students be at their best with smart food choices.
Andrea Nikolai, a registered dietitian with Washington Pediatrics, says eating breakfast is the most important thing to help test performance. She offers several suggestions for a quick and easy breakfast including yogurt, cereal with fruit, putting a hard-boiled egg on a stick so they can eat it in the car or trail mix.
The second tip Nikolai has is to serve kids foods that are dark green and blue. "The darker the green, the better," says Nikolai, since these types of foods are linked to good brain health. She recommend spinach and says kids often prefer raw spinach to lettuce and encourages parents to see if their kids like it. You can also look up recipes for kale chips to turn that into a healthy snack. You can also add either spinach or kale to spaghetti sauce or macaroni and cheese.
When it comes to blue food, Nikolai recommends blueberries. "They are a little berry with big benefits." She says research shows blueberries are linked to better memory and decision-making. Many kids love them out of the freezer or stirred into warm oatmeal. You could also add them to cereal or pancakes.
Nikolai's final tip is eating Omega-3 fats. The best source is fatty fish such as salmon, albacore tuna, mackerel or sardines. Other sources include walnuts and flaxseed.