Foods for Better Concentration

Focusing on the types of foods that you eat may boost performance.

By Dulce Zamora
WebMD Weight Loss Clinic - Feature

Reviewed By Brunilda Nazario, MD

A friend suggested I take ginseng after I complained about having trouble concentrating on a big project. She said it might help with my focus.

Another pal, who participated in a 24-hour relay race, says that Red Bull, marketed as an "energy drink," does the trick for him.

There are apparently many theories on focus-enhancing food and beverages. Edibles from caffeine to sugar to proteins are touted to help boost concentration.

Ubiquitous ads for dietary supplements add to the mix. Such products are supposed to improve memory, attention, and brain function.

With all these options offered, what's a person to do on the eve of an important affair? Can certain victuals help boost alertness for an exam, a job interview, or a presentation?

Conversations with various experts reveal that there is both good and bad news. First, the reality is that there is no one magic food guaranteed to help people perform their best mentally and physically. The research on the connection between food and concentration is, for the most part, either lacking, or inconclusive. Some of the claims attached to certain foods are exaggerations of the truth, or downright false.

Now, for more the optimistic report: Certain fare may work for some people for a short-term, and studies are ongoing on the promising benefits of some nutrients on brain function.