Modern life usually moves at a fast pace, and it can be hard to keep your head clear. You may feel like a zombie as stuff like fatigue, stress, and burnout regularly hijack your brain.
One thing that might help? Include a few brain-healthy habits into your morning ritual. To find the best ones, we spoke to two brain experts. They told use what they do every morning to guarantee their minds are prepared for the day.
Dr. Porter supports his morning brain by not setting an alarm. “One of the terrible things you can do to your nervous system is to wake up to a loud alarm,” he says. If you cannot wake up without one, he recommends going for a relaxing tone instead. There is also the option of a wake up light, available on Amazon, that simulates the sun rising.
Water vs caffeine
Dr. Willeumier never starts off drinking caffeine. Instead, she goes for two 8-ounce glasses of water. “Given that my body has just experienced 8-hours without water, we want to start our morning with hydration,” she says. To this end, she begins with two 8-ounce glasses: the first being plain water, and the second having fresh lemon.
A better breakfast
When Dr. Willeumier eats her morning meal (which is not first thing in the morning), she goes for foods to help her intestinal microbiome because the gut has a major influence over brain health.
“The microorganisms in your gut puts out neurotransmitters (like dopamine, serotonin and GABA), hormones, vitamins, and other molecules that can change our behavior, mood, and cognitive functioning,” Dr. Willeumier says. For example, 95 percent of your serotonin—which is a neurotransmitter vital in the regulation of digestion, appetite, sleep, and overall health—is made in your gut.
Dr. Willeumier reports that her top foods are fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, seeds and whole grains. “My breakfasts are oatmeal with oat milk along with organic blueberries, Ezekiel bread and avocado, a tofu scramble with red pepper and kale, or a smoothie with half a banana, one-third cup of oat milk, one-third cup of water, one-half teaspoon of cacao powder, one-half teaspoon of nut butter and one tablespoon of mushrooms to help my immunity and cognitive functioning,” she says.
Author: Scott Dowdy