Yes, the above photo is my lunch and yes it’s a thin cheese toastie with onion slices (don’t judge me). I don’t often eat bread, but when I do, I go all out and cut the single slice in half to make two… I’m a writer, uni student, mother, and I need to eat! But because I sit on my butt most of the day either typing on my computer or sitting in my most favourite part of the house: my bed, in soft natural lighting either reading a wonderful book like Elizabeth Gilbert’s BIG MAGIC or writing feverishly in my one of many idea books (we writers all have them), I realised we writers don’t move around much as we could and don’t have a great deal of time to organise elaborate, healthy snacks and lunches.
I really thought it was important to write this post today about coffee and cheese toasties because first, coffee is the lifeblood of my household and second, cheese toasties, well, it sounded good and I felt like eating one and realised I probably could have had a salad. As writers we are often at our desks day in and day out writing away completely engulfed in inspired creative work. I’m not in any way a dietitian or food expert; I leave that to my good friend and dietitian Vanessa Jenkin. However, I am a writer and happen to be an eater, so here goes. Below is a simple writer’s guide to eating well I’ve put together to inspire a good working relationship between our health and creativity.
Brain Boosting Deliciousness
As creators we rely on our brains for creativity so we need to make sure it doesn’t go hungry. Simple snacks that can boost our brainpower such as fish from colder climates that are high in Omega 3 fatty acids help to increase focus which is super important for writers.
- Have a can of Tuna (flavoured if you’d prefer) or Salmon.
- A (small) handful of nuts or seeds (like sunflower seeds)
- Walnuts (not fish I know, but still high in Omega 3 fatty acids (ALA) and they’re yummy)
- Salad and tuna – Grab a bag of premade salad, throw some into a bowl, and mix in a tin of tuna, add some cheese too if you like… voilà lunch! quicker than making a cheese toastie!
Food for Thought
Cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, Brussel sprouts, cauliflower and leafy greens have been scientifically proven to encourage a slow rate of cognitive decline which is a natural part of ageing. These vegetables are rich in antioxidants, and as well as providing a short-term boost to your creativity, are a great way to stay creatively focussed on your writing.
- Have small raw pieces of cauliflower ready to grab from the fridge when snackish.
- Have pre-cooked Brussel sprouts (golf balls as my dad would call them) in the fridge – take a few out and ding them in the microwave with some cheese on top for easy melted deliciousness.
- Cheese on any vegetable tastes good… so go for gold! yellow, blue, whatever cheese tickles your fancy (as long as it’s on veggies)
- Premake a vegetable frittata – lunch done for a couple of days!
Foods that Inspire
Ok, so we’re talking about antioxidants here. Antioxidants are super amazing for boosting concentration and memory for up to five hours because “antioxidants stimulate the flow of blood and oxygen to your brain – and keep the mind fresh”.
- Dark Chocolate! Yay!
- Coffee! Yay again! (but limited to maximum of two per day)
- Green tea (yeah…not my cuppa tea, but hey)
There have been many times where I’ve stood in front of the pantry or fridge, not knowing what I want to eat. I’m starving, but there’s nothing in a pantry that’s actually almost full. This is when I usually grab a spoon of Nutella or chocolate (again don’t judge me – I can be an uninspired ravenous gremlin when it comes to snacking). Studies show that unprocessed snacks are the way to go to boost creativity and stay focused and healthy.
- Blueberries again! (they’re pretty awesome)
- Have an Avo (avocado I mean)
- A slice of homemade Soda Bread (made with rye flour) with some Philadelphia, ham, and tomato! so quick, simple, and absolutely delish!
Food with Character
I threw this one in for good measure and it made me laugh.
“Fine, I’ll just sit here and stew”
Do you have any healthy eating tips for boosting creativity, focus, and brain power? We’d love to hear what you have to say about this topic. Share your opinions, experiences, and tips below in the comments section.