Advertisement

Which foods can help get me going in the morning?

What you eat can help you be more alert, think more clearly, have more energy, and even be more creative, says Elizabeth Somer, RD, author of Food & Mood. Assuming you've clocked at least 7 hours of sleep, these foods will get you up, focused, and feeling like a morning person -- even if you're totally not.
  1. A spoonful of sweetness: A tad of sugar in your coffee or honey in your smoothie stimulates the release of acetylcholine, a brain chemical that enhances memory. But don't overdo it or you'll soon feel drowsy. Excess sweetness can increase sleep-inducing serotonin levels in your brain.
  2. A whole-wheat bagel: Your primo brain fuel is glucose, the basic building block of carbs. So after a night of fasting, your brain is on red alert for a carb fix. You don't need a lot -- half a whole-wheat bagel will rev up your engines. So will a bowl of oatmeal. Pick your fave.
  3. Lox for that bagel: Salmon contains a form of omega-3 fatty acids known as DHA, which makes up 97% of the omega-3s in your brain. You need lots of DHA to get your mental decks cleared for action -- part of DHA's job is to carry away cellular waste that makes your brain feel sluggish.
  4. Spicy V8: Hot and spicy foods amp up blood flow, which is like warming your engines. If tomatoes are too acidic for you in the morning, toss a tablespoon of peeled fresh ginger into hot tea or a cold smoothie for a similar rush.
  5. Soy: It contains compounds called isoflavones that help clear your mind (and may fight memory loss, too). Drink a glass of calcium-fortified soymilk, pour it over whole-grain cereal, or toss some chopped tofu into scrambled eggs.
  6. Ice water: A small glass of frosty H2O will get your blood pumping. The cold shock forces your system to defend its normal temperature, which gives your metabolism a slight boost.
  7. Coffee: But of course! Caffeine helps alertness by dampening a chemical called adenosine, which otherwise blocks energy-boosting brain chemicals. As a result, you think faster, drive better, and remember more. Just know your jitter threshold -- getting too wired can undermine efficiency.
Besides facing the day -- we all have to -- the real benefit of switching your system to “on” in the morning is that your brain starts buzzing, absorbing facts, and making sense of interesting news. And becoming a lifelong learner can make your Real Age as much as 2.5 years younger.
 

Continue Learning about Health Value Of Foods

The Truth About Egg Yolks
The Truth About Egg Yolks
Why did the chicken cross the road? To deliver a yolk to the other side—and yolks are no joke. We reported on the JAMA study that eating 300mg of diet...
Read More
What Are the Health Benefits of Red Yeast Rice?
What Are the Health Benefits of Red Yeast Rice?
Why Should I Eat Black Rice?
Why Should I Eat Black Rice?
What Are the Health Benefits of Eggs?
What Are the Health Benefits of Eggs?

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.