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What Should I Eat Before Taking a Test?

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I took a math test and ran out of mental steam an hour into the test, aggravated by some guy who snored on and off for 45 minutes. Then a girl who came in a moment later, sat next to me and kept jiggling and wiggling herself as she took her test. Aargh! That one did me in.

Any dietary suggestions that I can eat before taking another stressful math exam?

Holly from Richardson, TX



Recent Answers

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By twat06/06/2010

Eat a banana.

By christine M. Thayer [2]09/04/2009

This one seems the best: By Murene (Guest Post)

When my children and husband had finals I would always make cheese omlettes with juice and toast, not sure if it was my breakfast or they just knew the material or both. Whatever, it worked for all of them! Protein & fat last a long time. Carbs can cut off the fuel for your brain. It causes a sharp rise in the blood sugar. This will kill the thoughts. I'd have the juice though.

By Guest (Guest Post)12/15/2008

You're going to want to eat carbohydrates, considering they release the majority of the energy used by your brain, a.k.a. glucose. 2 hours before the test, try oatmeal or some other whole wheat, hearty grain. Don't stuff yourself, eat light. Drink plenty of water. Avoid coffee, caffeine causes a crash. You can drink a warm beverage made from water, lemon juice, hot sauce, and ginger if you need something hot to get you going. Also, it's best to avoid sugars with grains, overall, so skip juices and fruits until after. If you're still hungry after your grains, stick some vegetables into your meal.

By (Guest Post)11/14/2008

Well I read somewhere you should eat fruit, eggs, and toast. Give it a try. It will keep you alert and focused. :)

By (Guest Post)11/07/2008

When ever I had to take a test in radiology school, I would bring in my ipod and listen to techno. The steady beat of the music kept me nice and focused. Also, the day before the test I would leave the books and notes closed. Have a nice pasta meal so I could get a good night's sleep, and in the morning, scrambled eggs with basil, oregano and shredded cheddar cheese. Tall glass of OJ and a glass of milk. Then a small snack like a banana or a blueberry muffin while driving to school. I passed all my tests with high scores. I'm not a classroom learner either.

By Murene (Guest Post)04/01/2008

When my children and husband had finals I would always make cheese omlettes with juice and toast, not sure if it was my breakfast or they just knew the material or both. Whatever, it worked for all of them!

By Holly [349]12/13/2007

Someone told me to have a peanut butter and jelly sandwich with 1 slice of high fiber bread, heavy on the pb, low on the jelly, prior to a test. I also have a carton of protein beverage with it (EAS AdvantEdge, 11 ozs., the low carb variety).
I've done this for the last 3 tests and it works well.
Keeps me going for 2 hours of heavy math concentration.

By Kyle (Guest Post)12/12/2007

Well, blueberries are supposed to improve memory so I say eat blueberry muffins or something before and during your studying. I have been doing so and I test tomorrow so we will see if it really does help improve memory. Can't hurt to try.

By sally (Guest Post)09/27/2007

Usually before a test most people don't know what to eat before test day, would you be able to tell me what you should eat?

By Warren D. Lockaby [2]02/21/2007

One other thing: this may be a bit tough but you can master it over time. Learn to tune distractions out entirely. You can shut them off in your mind. This won't work if somebody is physically poking you or getting in your face, but once you get it down you'll be amazed. I no longer do this, but I used to sit in a crowded, noisy bar and study or read novels or write letters or whatever, totally oblivious to the racket going on around me. Just train yourself to tune it all out.

By Warren D. Lockaby [2]02/21/2007

The best thing I've found, and this is for all-around health so do it every morning, is mix two or three tablespoons of oat bran in a glass of V-8 juice and chug it down. I use the 'hot and spicy', but any kind of thick juice will keep it suspended so use whatever you like... I used to use Pina Colada mix but it's just too expensive. Then eat a banana, that will boost your potassium. And drink three or four cups of good, strong coffee. (I usually drink one or 1 1/2 pots, but it takes a bit to kick me in gear.) After doing all this, brush your teeth, head, and (if you're like me and have a beard) face, vigorously. (Er, not with the same brush, silly.) Then drink one more cup of coffee and go to class, and you'll probably knock their socks off. Note that the tooth-brushing is done *after* all consumption of fruit. This is important because there is something about fruit on top of toothpaste that creates a really vile odor. I have no data to back this up but I used to work with a guy who was very careful about keeping clean, and often in the mornings his breath smelled like an unflushed urinal. He was a health nut and drank a lot of juice, and I finally realized what was causing that rank breath. He'd brush his teeth just before leaving his house, and drink a bottle of orange juice on his way to work. So unless you *want* your breath to smell like a cesspool, don't brush your teeth until after you are finished eating or drinking, especially fruit and juice.

By blind quilter (Guest Post)02/20/2007

When I took my Law School Admission Test three years ago we weren't even allowed water to drink during the testing! All our water bottles and snacks were held at the front of the room until the break. I drink lots of water, so I was pretty frustrated. For a quick, long lasting lift I use any kind of granola bars-- but not chocolate ones-- because the chocolate makes a fast lift followed by a fast crash.
Bananas are also good.
And if someone in the test room is snoring, maybe the proctor needs to remove that person from the room!

By jantoo (Guest Post)02/19/2007

I've had this same problem and I found that eating a good breakfast (protein, toast, juice, coffee or tea, but too much food will make you sleepy), taking an extra calcium-magnesium tablet (keeps you calm and focused), and a little Metamucil in water (yikes, I know, but it soothes your digestion, no constipation, diarrhea, stomach cramps or the dreaded tummy GROWLING) help. Also take a small snack along (chocolate has a little caffeine to perk you up), just in case you start sagging mid-test.

By me [3]02/17/2007

I actually had a class in college about test taking, strange i know but very helpful. What we were told was this: Memory is tied to other senses such as taste and smell, yes really! What you really need to do is to study the night before, reviewing the information you need to know, while eating your favorite food, the mind will associate this pleasure into memory as well as anything else your doing at the time, So if your favorite food is ice cream, eat it while working. We are hard wired to remember the very good things, so indulge !
ps we were also told that a monkey could pass a true or false 50% of the time and the the most popular answers on a multiple choice test are as this: first - D second - B third - C fourth- A.

By Mary [12]02/17/2007

When I had an early math class, I always made sure to eat protein for breakfast - usually eggs - before class. It really seemed to help with my focus and concentration - and ability to retain. I am also very sound sensitive so I purchased a pair of noise reduction headphones. I don't know if your teacher would agree to allow you to wear them but you may want to make an inquiry! They really help with noise distractions.

By Michele in WV (Guest Post)02/17/2007

I've heard that pasta will help and also that eating a hearty meal before the test will help. HTH!

By chml (Guest Post)02/17/2007

Peppermint patties during the test.

By mary (Guest Post)02/17/2007

Have a little protein snack before falling asleep (p.b., egg, cheese) to enhance your sleep and you will wake up strong. In the morning, make sure you have something with potassium (orange juice, for instance, or potatoes with skins, or a banana).

By Cassie Pulsifer02/16/2007

I hope I'm responding correctly, I just found this site. Anyway, I don't know if this is much help, but I do know that when I eat starches before something like a test makes me kind of tired and I can't concentrate at all. I don't really know what you should be eating, but don't eat pasta, breads, candies...or any other complex carbs. Maybe you should try fruits or something....I've always been told that fish was brain food...maybe eat some kind of fish or something? I know fish isn't much of a breakfast food though. Maybe some kind of breakfast like...eggs, orange juice & toast?...just 1 slice though. I don't know if I've helped at all.....I hope so. Anyone else know for sure?

By (Guest Post)02/16/2007

I just read an article about students who ate a banana just before a test. It gave them energy and helped with concentration. Also, the fructose (fruit sugar naturally found in bananas and other fruits) will give blood sugar an almost immediate boost, heightening concentration. If you like bananas, this is worth a try.

By pam munro [447]02/16/2007

Well, you might take along ear plugs! When I was a student I used to bring hard lemon drops in with me to keep me going. Nowadays there are sprays with ginseng/gotu kola and other medicinal energy supplies, too.

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