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Foods for Success: What Should You Eat Before The Interview?

By Marcus Samuelsson | October 9, 2012

When I was looking for apprenticeships following culinary school, I remember being frustrated by the ups-and-downs of the job market, being devastated by a rejection then instantly rejuvinated by a new lead. Anyone who has ever been on the job search has experienced this roller coaster, and also knows that if they are fortunate enough to get an interview, everything has to be perfect. While people go about this in different ways, perfecting their resumes, religiously rehearsing their answers to typical interview questions, choosing their outfits days in advance, too often they overlook the importance of the right food in the interview process. Eating well is a crucial step in ensuring a good interview performance, providing you with the energy and focus you need to convince a potential boss to give you the job. Here are some helpful tips for eating your way to success in the job search:

Photo: Joanne Bruno

  • For Energy, eat Protein –  Your breakfast on interview day should emphasize on thing: protein, protein, protein. The lean proteins found in eggs and fish not only provide that feeling of fullness, but also will give you sustained energy throughout the day. Try recipes such as a Kale Breakfast Bowl or the Swedish favorite Gravlax for both flavor and ample protein.

Photo: gkdavie

  • For Clarity, focus on Antioxidants and Omega-3 - Lingonberries and blueberries are not only some of my favorite foods, they are also a good source of antioxidants. Along with the essential fatty-acids found in edibles such as salmon and nuts, these chemicals have been shown in increase short-term brain functioning. Try a Kale, Oat, and Blueberry Smoothie or a Grilled Salmon Sandwich for a brain boost before the interview.


Photo: Joanne Bruno

  • For Stress, go Nuts - Research indicates that magnesium, an element commonly found in nuts, greatly reduces overall stress levels. Eating ample amounts of dried apricots, spinach, and corn, all foods also rich in magnesium, has the same effect. Try recipes such as Fava, Quinoa, and Spinach Cakes or Roasted Corn Salad to beat pre-interview jitters.

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Whether it’s finding the best goat tacos in LA, spotting a well-worn vintage bag in Sweden, or interviewing the “crab man” selling seafood on a corner in Harlem, we tell stories seen from Chef Marcus Samuelsson‘s point of view. strives to create conversations about food, nutrition, culture, art, and design. We want to find Read More


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