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What to eat before exams – expert diet tips to help kids score well

Nutritionist Dhvani Shah shares tips.

Written by Kriti Saraswat |Updated : May 5, 2016 1:26 PM IST

Read this in Hindi.

Exams are just around the corner and preparations are in full swing. As a parent you are bound to be concerned about your kid s ongoing prep as well as their health. In order to help them perform their best, it is important that they eat the right diet as nutrition is also a contributing factor in how well they do in exams. We ask consulting dietician and naturopathic nutritionist Dhvani Shah for that winning formula that can make your kid the class champion.

Importance of the right diet

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Children are often under stress during exam time as they have to study for longer hours and perform well to score well. All these can be daunting for them and if they eat unhealthy food, they are not just likely to fall sick but also feel tired and drowsy throughout the day (even during the exam). As a parent, you can ensure this does not happen.

Says Dhvani, Food is vital for brain development. The brain is at maximum stress during exams due to long study hours, pressure for remembering information and performing well in the examination. Eating right helps reduce stress, calms the nerves, keeps the body light and active, prevents drowsiness and keeps the brain cells well-nourished to improve memory. Make these 10 diet changes for your kids to top exams.

Foods to eat before exams

Food items that are good for kids to have before their exams are those which have low GI or glycemic index. This is because this will not shoot up their blood sugar levels very quickly and prevent sluggishness during the exam. Also, they need to be high on the nutrition meter. According to Dhvani, the following foods are good:

  • Nuts
  • Smoothies
  • Cheese vegetable sandwich

Is the traditional dahi-chini or curd with sugar a healthy option?

Curd is an excellent food during exams. Adding sugar to curd (like tradition demands) helps calm the nerves, provides sustained energy release and keeps the brain active. A better alternative would be the addition of fruit and nuts to yoghurt (smoothies) since they provide additional vitamins and minerals, advises Dhvani. Beat exam stress with these tips.

Foods to avoid before exams

There are certain food items that should definitely be avoided before exams as these can make children feel drowsy during their papers. This will prevent them from performing to their optimal potential which can result in bad grade. To ensure this doesn t happen, Dhvani suggests avoiding foods that contain simple sugars, high fat, preservatives. These include foods such as:

  • Packaged fruit juices
  • Junk foods such as pizza, burger
  • Deep-fried foods such as samosa, fries, etc.

Such foods can damage the brain cells, cause anxiety/nervousness also. It is better to give children home-made food as they are also hygienic and prevent the risk of stomach ailments. Apart from food, make sure your child drinks enough water throughout the day to avoid dehydration. Also read these tips for kids to improve concentration.

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