Are You Really What You Eat?

   The saying, “You are what you eat” is a common phrase in popular culture, but is it really true? In a recent study published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, it states that three year olds who ate a higher fat diet had a lower IQ five years later than three year olds who ate a healthier diet.

   Kelsey Keena (11) relates to this study as she says, “When I eat a lot of sugary foods, I get a super high but then I have a huge crash which makes me feel more tired then I felt in the beginning. I try to eat healthy before tests because I do not want to be super tired or feel lazy.”

   At West High, many students are encouraged by teachers to get rest the night before an important test and eat a healthy breakfast the morning of the exam. To some, this message goes unheard but Kimberly Deckman (11) explains, “I feel better about myself both mentally and physically when I eat healthy foods before a test.”

   In order to eat well before a test, one should remember to include plenty of protein as it sustains throughout the day. Good protein-filled breakfast foods include eggs, nuts, cottage cheese and yogurt. Deckman adds, “Before a history or math test, I love to snack on a grapefruit or granola as it gets my mind going.” In addition to a good amount of protein, one should keep the meal light as large portions tend to make people feel drowsy.

   If your test is later in the day, make sure you have snacks to hold you over in case you have a sudden hunger. Also, drink plenty of water because even if you eat a nutritious breakfast, dehydration can take a large toll on your body. A lack of water can cause you to move and think more slowly, often leading to poor performance on exams.

   Carly Saber (10) agrees that eating properly leads to high test scores as she notes, “I try to eat healthy breakfasts on a daily basis and I always feel lighter and in a better mood going into the classroom.”

   Whether or not eating junk foods permanently lowers your IQ, several West High students agree that when you eat junk food, the day seems longer and they felt more lethargic. Next time you have a big test, listen to your teacher and make sure to eat a proper breakfast and get a good night’s sleep.