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Trials and Tribulations

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Wake Up Tired? Jumpstart Your Brain! brain.jpgIf you recently read my Cubicle Laws, you are aware that I do not like anyone to talk to me first thing in the morning. I need at least 30 minutes at work before I consider my brain “functional.” Part of the reason people are cranky in the morning is because they are still tired, despite sleeping the night before. Exercising in the morning would remedy this, but some of us just can’t fathom pound the pavement when it’s still dark out. Here are some ways to wake up your brain – regardless of the time of day.

Avoid Allergens. Certain foods that include peanuts, wheat, corn or dairy can not only cause digestive problems but generate a “brain fog” that will leave you tired and feeling slowed down. The best way to determine if you’re subject to this type of allergies is to simply be aware of what you are eating and how you feel afterwards. Identify a trend and eliminate the grub from your diet.

Dietary Moderation. When you stuff your face, you will force your body to concentrate on the digestion process. This redirects your blood away from your brain, thus limiting your brain power.

Vinpocetine. Extracted from the periwinkle plant, this stuff is said to increase cerebral blood flow and improve memory. There are some side effects and you should consult your physician before you give it a go.

Front Load Antioxidants. Antioxidants protect your cells, including the ones making up your brain. Some dried fruits you should toss into your shopping cart and keep in your desk drawer: prunes, raisins, blueberries, blackberries, cranberries, strawberries and raspberries. Vitamin C & E. These will reduce the clogging of blood vessels, including those going in the brain.

Avoid Sugar. The”sugar blues”make it hard to think clearly. This is due to the insulin that rushes into your bloodstream to counteract sweets. Avoid white pasta, white sugars and white bread before that big work project.

Herbs. A simple whiff of basil or rosemary could result in a quickie brain boost. In general, there are plenty of foods that “feed” your brain. Among them: avocados, bananas, lean beef, brewer’s yeast. broccoli, brown rice, brussel sprouts, cantaloupe, cheese, chicken, collard greens, eggs, flaxseed oil, legumes, oatmeal, oranges, peanut butter, peas, potatoes, romaine lettuce, salmon, soybeans, spinach, tuna, turkey, wheat germ, and yogurt. Now it’s your turn! Share your tactics to wake up your brain!
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