TOPIC 5 - FOCUS AND CONCENTRATION
with Lisa Middleton - Advanced Sports Dietitian
Food for Focus
- With everything going on in the world right now, it can be easy to find it hard to focus day-to-day. Did you know that nutrition can help?
- The foods you eat can help your brain to function better, which means improved concentration and focus on whatever you are doing – important for sport, school, work and anything that requires clear thinking.
- Think about what you eat for lunch. Does it include foods that will boost your brainpower or more likely to leave you feeling drained?
- Keeping blood glucose levels stable is key to concentration, as it’s the major fuel source for the brain. Choosing low glycemic index (GI) carbohydrates, as well as spacing protein intake over the day, can help to keep blood glucose levels well-balanced.
- This means foods like wholegrains, fruit, vegetables, nuts/seeds, lean protein, dairy food and healthy fats like olive oil
- One of the best grains for breakfast are oats – low GI, high fibre, contain protein and a range of nutrients to help keep your energy levels going throughout the morning. So think mueslis and porridge, just like the quick and easy porridge recipe below.
2-minute porridge with banana, dates and cinnamon yoghurt
This porridge can be ready in minutes. You can adjust the amount of liquid if you like your porridge runnier or thicker. Low GI oats and banana provide carbohydrate for sustained energy, with protein from the milk and yoghurt. My standard breakfast is porridge, and I love it with berries instead of the bananas and dates in summer, but always with the yoghurt.
Recipe from ‘Super Food for Performance in Work Sport and Life’ by Lisa Middleton
- 1/3 cup/30g rolled oats
- 1/3 cup/80ml low-fat milk
- 1/3 cup/80ml water
- 2 dates, chopped
- ¼ cup/60g low-fat Greek yoghurt
- ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ banana, sliced
- Mix the oats with the low-fat milk, water and dates in a microwave safe dish or bowl. Cook on high power for one minute. Stir and cook for another minute.
- Combine the Greek yoghurt and cinnamon and mix well.
- Serve the porridge topped with sliced banana and cinnamon yoghurt.