Editor’s Note: As Finals Week approaches, the Eccles School is doing a five-part series featured in the Newsroom on how to keep up your energy levels. Here is the second installment.

A healthy level of energy is vital to performing at your full potential as a student. When we are low on energy, it becomes more difficult to focus, to stay committed to tasks, and to keep our overall cognitive function at its full potential. Without adequate levels of energy, we are unlikely to reach our full potential in the classroom and during our study time.

It is natural to have some variation in the way you feel from day to day, but there are some things you can do to increase your overall levels of energy and mental focus.

Proper Diet

Diet also plays an important role in our energy levels and in our ability to focus. The topic of diet is quite a large topic, so we will only touch on a few brief things here. Though many of these things may be common sense, it can be easy to ignore some of these things.

First, pay attention to your diet. Notice how things such as sugar, soda and coffee affect your energy levels. Some of these things will cause a spike in energy during one point in the day but then a crash later in the day. You can use these patterns to your advantage if you are aware of them.

It helps to be fairly consistent with your dietary habits while also getting a good variety of various foods. Try to eat breakfast, lunch and dinner close to the same times every day.

Eat a light breakfast every day. The word “light” is included because a heavy breakfast can leave you feeling sluggish and can also expand your stomach, causing an increase in appetite throughout the day.

Avoid eating too late in the day as that may interfere with your ability to sleep at night.

Proper nutri