For the last few weeks, Juhi Talwar, 16, has been following a healthy diet plan for her board exams.
She breaks her fast with a bowl of vegetables or fruits. Lunch is a balanced homemade Indian meal, evening snacks include nuts and dried fruits, and dinner is soup and a baked dish.
“Eating correctly has helped me concentrate better during prep leave. While my mother ensures I eat well during the day, my father stops me from having things that could make sick,” said the student of Hiranandani Foundation School, Powai.
Parents are trying to regularise their children’s eating patterns, keeping the junk food levels low and the brain foods levels high.
“My son often studies late into the night and I make sure I give him a small snack or a mug of milk. Otherwise he would wake up on an empty stomach and feel faint.
Of course, he does get an occasional treat,” said Mrinalini Munim, whose son, Hriday, will give his Indian School Certificate exams in March.
Nutritionists suggest that students eat small meals, spaced regularly through the day. Strict no-nos include oily, deep friend foods and soporific meals such as large quantities of rice or potatoes. “Students should eat high-protein meals, drink plenty of water and stick to a regular pattern of eating. Particularly healthy foods are nuts and dried fruits such as almonds and apricots and green vegetables,” said Sunita Dube, a nutritionist.