Nutrition For Dummies
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No food will change your personality or alter the course of a mood disorder. But some may add a little lift or a small moment of calm to your day, increase your effectiveness at certain tasks, make you more alert, or give you a neat little push over the finish line.

The watchword is balance:

  • One cup of coffee in the morning is a pleasant push into alertness. Seven cups of coffee a day can make your hands shake.
  • One alcohol drink is generally a safe way to relax. Three may be a disaster.
  • A grilled chicken breast (white meat, no skin) for breakfast on a day when you have to be on your toes before lunch can help make you sharp as a tack.
  • Got an important lunch meeting? Order starches without fats or oils: pasta with fresh tomatoes and basil, no oil, no cheese; rice with veggies; rice with fruit. Your aim is to get the calming carbs without the high-fat food that slows thinking and makes you feel sleepy.
As in other aspects of a healthy life, the point is to make sure that you use the tool (in this case, food), not the other way around.

About This Article

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About the book author:

Carol Ann Rinzler is a former nutrition columnist for the New York Daily News and the author of more than 30 health-related books, including Controlling Cholesterol For Dummies, Heartburn and Reflux For Dummies, The New Complete Book of Food, the award-winning Estrogen and Breast Cancer: A Warning for Women, and Leonardo’s Foot, which the American Association for the Advancement of Science described as “some of the best writing about science for the non-scientist encountered in recent years.”

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