The Ultimate Finals Week Snack Pack
It’s the (un)happiest time of the year. Whether you have two finals or 200, the end of the semester is always a time of reflection (usually on how much damage this semester will do to your GPA), emotion (because five projects are due tomorrow and you have two more tests the day after), and uncertainty (because why try to get into med school when you could drop out and join the circus).
We all know that food is the one thing that can sop up our tears. Behold– a list of foods that will help you get through the emotional roller coaster that is finals week. After all, it is called crunch time for a reason.
Procrastination is inevitable during finals week, but your time to put things off is running out. These options are for the times when you have to either get down to business or admit defeat. These foods will help you power through.
Option A: A trendy green smoothies
These smoothies are full of ingredients that are proven to help you stay focused, such as leafy greens and blueberries. You can make them at home so that you can customize them with your favorite fruits, or they are available on campus at Strong Hearts and Freshens. For an added dose of concentration, sprinkle some green tea powder (aka Matcha aka fairy dust) into your smoothie.
Option B: Chips and guacamole
As if we needed any more proof that avocados are God’s gift to earth, they actually help improve your concentration as well. Avocados contain nutrients that enhance blood flow and fire up brain cells, so when you need to accomplish 20 things in one hour, make sure you get your guacamole fix first.
Here are some other options if you're about to be awake for at least 36 hours:
There comes a point in life when a cup of coffee just doesn’t go as far as it used to. In times like these, or when the fatigue just runs too deep for coffee to do its job, try some of these pick-me-ups to help you keep going.
Option A: Egg sandwich
Good news: egg sandwiches do more than cure your hangovers. When you’re debating whether or not to wait in the egg line at the dining hall, keep in mind that the energy you get from the eggs will be worth the wait. Slap those eggs on some whole-wheat toast or bagel with some cheese, and you have a power-packed breakfast to get you through even the toughest of days.
Option B: Chocolate caffeine bars
Awake Caffeinated Chocolate bars kill two birds with one stone: you get your caffeine fix and you satisfy your sweet tooth. You can find them in our very own Pages Café, which is especially convenient considering you’ll probably be living in Bird for the entire week. They come in milk and caramel flavors, and each bar contains the caffeine equivalent of one cup of coffee… you’re welcome.
Here are the best snacks for when you’re feeling anxious:
When you start to feel anxious about all the upcoming tests and projects, it is best to avoid foods like coffee, candy, and processed foods, since they can negatively affect your mood and cause your energy to crash. Try eating these foods instead, which, surprisingly enough, can help calm your nerves.
Option A: Steak
Studies have shown that foods rich in B vitamins can improve your mood, and a deficiency in B vitamins can trigger depression in some people. To ward off the negative vibes that finals week inevitable brings, go ahead and treat yourself to a big ol’ juicy filet mignon. Other good options that are rich in B vitamins as well include chicken, pork, eggs, and nuts.
Option B: Sushi
If you didn’t love sushi before, you will now. Sushi is essentially a vessel for anxiety-fighting ingredients. Fish rich in omega-3s such as salmon or tuna, seaweed (which is used for the wrap), avocado, and brown rice all contain healthy nutrients that help to defend against anxiety. So if you find yourself debating whether or not Bleu Monkey is the move… stop it. Sushi is always the move.
And last, but certainly not least….
Here are the best foods to eat when you just need a hug:
This is the scenario: If you read another word of your textbook you’ll cry. You’ve made so many flashcards that your fingers are basically just one big paper cut. Your calc final bent you over a barrel and showed you the fifty states. It's officially time for some good old-fashioned comfort food. Here are some effortless, yet nonetheless satisfying, foods to soothe your aching soul.
Option A: S’mores dip
For an easy dish to make, this dessert yields a high reward. Just put a layer of chocolate chips in the bottom of an oven-safe skillet and top with marshmallows. Cook until the marshmallows start to brown on the top, then remove from the oven. Use graham crackers to scoop up a dollop of melty, gooey chocolate and marshmallow, and experience what it feels like to be hugged from the inside out. Pro-tip: for added awesomeness, put some peanut butter chips in the skillet with the chocolate chips.
Option B: Cheese-encrusted grilled cheese
This is for those of us who believe that cheese is literally a food group of its own. This is your average grilled cheese on steroids, but the change is so simple even a brain dead college student can do it. Instead of limiting the cheese to inside the sandwich, throw some cheese down in the pan before placing your constructed sandwich on top of it. Press down with a spatula to make sure the sandwich adheres to the cheese. Once the cheese gets crusty, repeat the process for the other side of the sandwich. Just make sure you use sufficient handfuls of cheese each time because honestly, the more cheese the merrier. When the finished product is done, you’ll never want to eat a grilled cheese the old way again—although your cholesterol might beg you to do otherwise.
Eat up and enjoy!