Lissette Vaca / Daily Nexus

Lissette Vaca / Daily Nexus

With the beginning of the academic school year, staying awake and alert throughout the week can be tough. College students seem to be some of the busiest people in the world: juggling classes, attending extracurricular activities and pursuing a social life. The question, then, is how can we college students succeed with our busy schedules without feeling tired and fatigued throughout our day? While there are many factors that come into play — like getting enough sleep and exercising regularly — our diets are directly correlated with our alertness and attentiveness.

Caffeine is a stimulant that is excessively used by college students. Whether it is a pick-me-up cup of coffee or an extra-large can of red bull, caffeine is used to help students stay awake throughout their day. While it is recommended to only indulge in caffeinated drinks in the morning, it is important not to misuse this commonplace stimulant. Although consuming caffeine is a great way to help stay awake in class, there are many other tips and adjustments that can be made in your everyday diet to help fight fatigue.

We have always been told that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Fueling your body in the early morning gives yourself a boost of energy that can be carried on throughout the day. Drinking a glass of water in the morning can help begin metabolism, flush out toxins and prevent dehydration. Choosing water over sugary drinks can highly benefit your body and health by maintaining a hydrated and alert state of mind.

Vitamins like B-6 and B-12 provide the body energy. B-6 can help regulate mood, metabolism and sleep. It is found in foods like bananas, avocados and walnuts. Vitamin B-12 is known for providing the body with necessary amounts of energy. It is high in animal products like meat, fish, milk and eggs. Those who choose to abstain from these foods, like vegetarians and vegans, are advised to take a B-12 supplement in order to avoid states of weakness and fatigue. Both B-6 and B-12 vitamins are good to keep in mind when dealing with fatigue in class.

Cocoa beans in chocolate naturally contain caffeine that can help you stay alert. Although chocolate does not have nearly as much caffeine as coffee or tea, it can serve as an alternative to boost energy. Dark chocolate supplies the most amount of caffeine due to its high cocoa bean content. Snacking on dark chocolate in moderation can help with wakefulness in class. Again, it is recommended to eat foods that are higher in caffeine earlier in the day and in moderation to prevent sleep disruption.