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August 1, 2011

Poker Table Physiology: Best Brain Foods

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Like any competitive athlete, poker players need hearty foods to power through long rounds of live tournaments, whether in a game at home with friends or the WSOP. Like runners who have to pound massive amounts of pasta and grains the night before a big run, poker players need to eat right to ensure huge wins at the tables the day of a big game. You should avoid sugars and oils that’ll cause you to crash. Here are our top suggestions for a night of poker:

1)    Tortilla and Potato Chips- Let these settle your stomach just before the game or as it slowly gets going. Although many people would spring for the salsa and cheese to go on these, no one likes sticky cards. To prevent this, just leave the toppings off.

2)    Finger foods for the “meal” – Small sandwiches, subs, wraps, or even chicken nuggets cab be picked up and eaten easily with minimal mess and without taking your eyes off the cards.

3)    Salmon is a huge brain food. Make it into a nice sandwich or chunks you can just pick up and eat. Wild salmon specifically has been linked to increased cognition, alertness, and memory. It has also been shown to have long-term benefits, so you can keep playing well into your sunset years.

4)    Nuts such as almonds, cacao beans, or pistachios will add vital nutrients and minerals to keep your body working in perfect order so you can focus on the game

5)    For desert, eat fruit or chocolate, especially blueberries. Natural chocolate is a brain food. These will keep your energy high even at the end of a game from naturally occurring sugars while still getting a sweet treat.

Follow this general plan to keep focused and full throughout the game. Keep in mind that some of these foods will be oily, which can damage the cards too. It’s a good idea to keep towels around the table for everyone to wipe frequently if they plan to multitask. There will probably be leftovers since the game will take priority over filling your mouth, so why not use it to comfort someone’s pain? Give the leftovers to the friends who lost the most money during the game, ya’ know, to ease their pain.


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