retention capacity

Intellectual growth means constant expansion of horizons and consequent formation of new purposes and new responses. These are impossible without an active disposition to welcome points of view hitherto alien; an active desire to entertain considerations which modify existing purposes. Retention of capacity to grow is the reward of such intellectual hospitality.
—  John Dewey, Democracy and Education
Top 10 food to study

Certain food favour the perfomance of the brain when we do cognitive activities like studying. Here there are ten of these products that help students to improve their performance.But do not expect miracles without appropriate study hours you won’t improve.


  1. Blueberries. They are rich in vitamin C, antioxidants, which help to activate protective enzymes in the brain and improve memory in the long term.
  2. Walnuts. Their high phosphorus content, make them the most effective nut for activities such as study or any related to intellectual performance. Similarly, almonds improve memory too.
  3. Coffee and tea. Caffeinated coffee gives you a dose of early morning energy, and in small doses, it can help you concentrate and tea, contains caffeine too and  L-theanine, indicated to improve memory and concentration.
  4. Black chocolate. The health benefits of chocolate come from flavonoids, a type of phytochemical found in the cacao bean. Dark chocolate contains a higher percentage of cocoa than white or milk chocolate. And the more cocoa a chocolate product contains, the richer its health-promoting content.
  5. Bananas. They are high in potassium and vitamin C and they contains Vitamin B6 which helps in the natural production of neurotransmitters associated with concentration, such as serotonin and dopamine.
  6. Oats. This cereal, known to be beneficial for the skin, is also good for the nervous system by its high content of thiamine or vitamin B1. In addition, it is rich in protein and healthy fats. It is advisable to consume in times of stress and is beneficial for short-term memory.
  7. Carrots. Like oats, its intake also implies benefits for the skin and is indicated to improve memory. Long-term consumption can increase our retention capacity thanks to the antioxidant beta-carotene.
  8. Salmon. Many specialists recommend it because it is high in omega 3. This fish and tuna improve concentration, memory and learning.
  9. Dark green vegetables. Spinach, asparagus, broccoli, and Brussels sprouts all provide folate, which appears crucial to brain function.
  10. Hemp seed.  It provides brain-powering protein, omega-3s and -6s, and a variety of antioxidants and other nutrients which improve your memory.

eduardogarcia653  asked:

Hi Renata, my friends and I are starting to study for USMLE STEP 1 and have no clue where to begin in terms of creating a study schedule. We have used your blog as a study aid and have found it very useful. We were wondering if you could give us some direction and tell us what worked for you. Thank you!

Hi Eduardo! I’m very happy my blog can help you and your friends! Check out this list to find more USMLE-related study blogs!

Well, I always advice to make your own schedule, bc it depends if you are working, or how much time you need to preprare for the exam. Mine was aweful, it took me A LOT OF TIME to prepare for this exam due to several reasons (mostly fear) 

I will advice you based on some things I did wrong. Like, if I had to do it again, I would do it like this! A lot of people recommend me some of this tips, but I’m so freaking stubborn and had to do it “my way”. But I’m certain I won’t do the same for the upcoming exams!

Anyway, the only things I can recomend you are the following

  1. Leave whatever needs more memorization for last: I left biochem and pharm and neuronatomy for last. Although, neuroanatomy doesn’t require much memorization as the previous 2, so if I had to do it again, I would study anatomy & neuroanatomy together, not separate. 
  2. Stick to ONE source only: if you choose Kaplan, or DIT or whatever, stick just to one source. If you pretend to read all the books you are gonna loose valuable time! Only have other books to review certain topics that you didn’t understand from your main source!                                                                                             

  3. Start doing questions when you have reviewed the 50% of the material: meaning, if you are going to study subject wise, (not by organ system) and you have 8 books to review, when you finished the 4th book, start doing questions. It doesn’t matter if you haven’t studied some subjects yet, you need to get familiar with the type of questions. This exam is about repetition, and the key to pass is making as much questions as you can. UWorld is a great Q bank.
  4. Your First Aid is your bible: when you start doing questions, write down as much info in your FA as you can! At the end, it will only be your FA, your Qbanks and your summaries.                                            
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  5. Do NBMEs when you are done with the 100% of the material, and do it with feedback: this way you’ll get to see which subjects need more attention, which questions you got wrong, which ones you got right bc you knew them, and which ones you got right out of luck! Study them! There’s a chance some questions will repeat in your exam!!!
  6. Work out: this preparation in nerve racking, and can get depressing sometimes. When I worked out, I didn’t feel sad or that much stressed, it helps a lot! 

  7. Take one day off: you need it to reload for the next 6 days. It is necessary.
  8. Do not study the day before the exam: I didn’t follow this advice, I studied and couldn’t sleep and I was sooooo fucking tired the day of the exam, by the 4th block I was so sleepy!!!                                                                                                                  
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Well, I hope this can guide you somehow! Don’t make the same mistakes I did! It will make your prep more efficient and organized. Mine was a wreck!

But the most important advice I can give you, is to believe in yourself! The day of the exam repeat in your head that they’re gonna ask you the things you know the most! That you are freaking smart and you can nail this mf! Repeat it out loud and trust in your knowledge.

And remember that this is only a fucking exam. This doesn’t represents how intelligent you are, this exam tests -in my opinion- your retention capacity. THAT’S ALL! 

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I wish you and your friends the best of luck on your exam date and all the success of the world! 

And please, if you are Spanish speaking, write to me in Spanish! I love to hear from my Latinamerican brothers :)

Take care! 

xo

Renata

youtube

Water Has Memory

Water – just a liquid or much more? Many researchers are convinced that water is capable of “memory” by storing information and retrieving it. The possible applications are innumerable: limitless retention and storage capacity and the key to discovering the origins of life on our planet. Research into water is just beginning.

(Thought-provoking video.)