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11 Easy Brain Snacks to Help with Your Concussion Recovery

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If you’re trying to recover from a concussion, you likely know how hard it is to make quick decisions. Decision fatigue is very real and makes it tough to choose foods in your concussion recovery.

Snacks are a great way to fuel your recovery, especially if you have low energy or low appetite.

So here’s a list of easy brain snacks and how they help you recover from a concussion.

11 easy brain snacks to help with your concussion recovery

#1 Crackers with tuna and cherry tomato

Fish is a brain-boosting food that just might help with memory and cognitive function. Canned fish is an easy snack that is also high in protein. Spread onto whole grain crackers and top with a veggie of your choice!

Black plate with 3 round crackers topped with tuna, tomato slice, chives
Here I mixed canned tuna with some mayonnaise, spread it onto a whole grain oat cracker, and topped it with a slice of tomato and chopped chives.

#2 Nuts, seeds, dried fruit, and chocolate

Nuts and seeds are a great source of essential nutrients for the brain. If you’re dealing with nausea, try including some crystallized dry ginger. Choose whatever chocolate you like, though dark chocolate has more antioxidants.

Mixed nuts and seeds on a plate with dried apricots, ginger, plus squares of dark chocolate

#3 Waffle with cottage cheese and berries

I buy frozen waffles made with flaxseed for extra fibre. Cottage cheese is a great source of protein. Berries add antioxidants to this brain snack.

Orange and yellow plate with round waffle, cottage cheese, blueberries

#4 Tortilla hummus and lettuce wrap

Honestly, wrap anything in a tortilla and it’s great! I also find it an easy way to get my leafy greens, which are associated with long-term brain health when you eat them 6 or more times a week.

Orange and yellow plate with two halves of a corn tortilla wrap. Showing lettuce and hummus on the inside.

#5 Boiled egg snack packs

This idea comes from Eggs contain nutrients that are important for brain health. I like mine with crackers, cheese, and bell pepper sticks. But make this brain snack your own!

Glass divided container with eggs, berries, nuts, crackers and cheese
Image from eggs. ca. Click the image to see other snack packs you can make!

#6 Chocolate banana tofu smoothie

This recipe comes from an intern who worked with me in the spring. I don’t actually care for smoothies, but I love this one! Tofu is a great source of plant protein. The banana offers energy and potassium, something I find many of my clients are missing.

Medium glass filled with chocolate tofu banana smoothie on a green placement with a full banana on the side.
In a blender mix together 1/2 cup soft tofu, 1/2 cup milk or alternative, 1 frozen banana, 2 Tbsp cocoa powder, 1 Tbsp maple syrup, 1-2 Tbsp ground chia seeds (optional)

#7 Chickpea and pesto naan bread with yogurt dip

This is so easy! Just spread pesto on a piece of naan bread. Top with some chickpeas and bake in the oven. This brain snack provides energy and protein, plus the yogurt offers healthy bacteria that are great for your gut!

Naan bread cut into triangles with pesto spread on top, chickpeas and a dollop of yogurt in the middle.
Make this by spreading 1-2 Tbsp of pesto onto naan bread. Add as many canned chickpeas as you like. Bake in the oven at 325F for 3 to 5 minutes, until browned on the edges.

#8 Granola bars

Some days you seriously just don’t have the energy. Give yourself some grace and keep some granola bars on hand. Look for ones with 2 or more grams of fibre per serving.

White background with unwrapped granola bar.

#9 Kale chips, sourdough, and edamame beans

Kale chips are simple to make, though a bit time-consuming. I like to dip my bread in olive oil and red wine vinegar. I also buy frozen edamame beans and prepare them in the microwave with a bit of salt. Leafy greens, energy, and plant protein all on one plate!

White plate with whole edamame beans, sourdough bread sliced in the middle, kale chips at the back and a small cup of oil and vinegar.
Kale chips can be made by tearing up a bunch of fresh kale leaves, adding about 1 Tbsp oil, and a pinch of salt, pepper, and other spices. Spread on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake in the oven at 250F for 15 to 20 minutes.

#10 Bean salad

Having beans 4 or more times a week might lower your risk of dementia. I take a can of 6-bean medley and toss it with some olive oil, lemon juice, salt, pepper, and herbs. This makes a simple snack or side.

Glass bowl with a mix of beans, tomatoes, cucumbers and two basil leaves.
You can add veggies to bean salads as well! Here I added chopped grape tomatoes and cucumber. But things like broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, and other long-lasting produce work well too!

#11 Oatmeal the way you like it

Oats are a budget-friendly brain snack. Oats have antioxidants, which help with inflammation, plus soluble fibre, which is great for your gut.

Hand holding a grey bowl with oatmeal, dry mango, coconut flakes, almonds.
In a small pot add 1/4 cup rolled oats, 1 Tbsp shredded coconut, 1 Tbsp hemp seeds, 2 slices chopped dried mango, 1/4 cup chopped green apple, a dash of salt & cardamom, 1/4 cup water and 1/2 cup of milk. Heat on medium, covered, for 5 to 6 minutes. Finish by sprinkling some sliced almonds on top 🙂

DIY your brain snacks

As you move forward in your concussion recovery, create your own list of brain snacks!

Mix and match different combinations of foods from each of these categories:

  1. Energy bites: grains, starches, fruits
  2. Building blocks: proteins
  3. Added anti-inflammatory foods: veggies, unsaturated fats

Getting foods from each of these categories will ensure your brain gets the variety of nutrients it needs to recover from a concussion.

Are you still overwhelmed by food choices?

If after trying these brain snacks you still find it overwhelming to decide what to eat, or if you have some food allergies/sensitivities, then reach out because I’m here to help!

Check out my calendar to book a free call with me. We’ll look at what’s making food decisions hard for you in your recovery. If it seems like we’re a good fit to work together, we can take a look at my TBI Nutrition Program.

Best in brain health,

Krystal Merrells

Registered Dietitian

Concussion Warrior