(WR)Timm Ringhofer's Nov/Dec Utne Review

greenspun.com : LUSENET : M.Ed./International Falls : One Thread

Snacks for Brainiacs by Elizabeth Somer, November-December 1998, pp. 98-99.

Why I found this article thought provoking.

Timm Ringhofer

It doesnt take long after seeing me that I enjoy to eat. I like most foods, and have a tendency to eat at the wrong times of the day, mostly before bedtime and not at breakfast.

It is common knowledge as far as I know that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. This was stated in the article as well. It has been told to me for as long as I can remember, and I have told students and athletes more times than I care to admit. This applies to everyone else except for me. I eat when I feel hungry. At 7:00 a.m., when I am leaving for school, I dont feel hungry. This is the main reason why I dont eat. Another reason I dont eat breakfast is that when I was in elementary school, I used to feel nauseated all the time because of nerves or whatever. I determined that if I didnt eat, then I probably would not vomit. This probably wasnt very good reasoning, but not eating breakfast is something that I should do.

Enough about my poor eating habits and back to the article. Keeping glucose levels at optimal ranges enhances learning, memory, and thinking. The best way to do this is have a breakfast made up of complex carbohydrates and a little protein: a bowl of shredded wheat, nonfat milk, and a banana is one example of how to get this.

Meals should be spread into four to six light meals and snacks evenly distributed throughout the day. Avoid eating high-fat, heavy meals containing more than 1000 calories, which can leave you feeling sluggish and sleepy. Foods loaded with antioxidants--vitamin C, vitamin E, beta carotene, and phytochemicals--help prevent premature aging of the brain and nervous system. Peppers, orange juice, carrots, spinach, and broccoli are excellent sources of antioxidants.

Minerals essential for clear thinking include iron, boron, and zinc. Iron helps carry oxygen near brain cells. Boron is essential for short and long term memory as is zinc.

Coffee should be at no more than 15 ounces a day.

This article really made me sit up and think about how I eat everyday. I am trying to eat at least a small breakfast, keep my heavy meals to a minimum, and trying to eat more of the good foods described in the article. The information above is not everything mentioned in the article, but I believe are the main ones. I am also going to share this article with my classes for their information.

-- Anonymous, March 10, 1999

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