WASHINGTON (AP) -- Sticking to a few basic nutrition guidelines can make all the difference when trying to keep comfort foods from clashing with a healthy lifestyle.
To help, Brie Turner-McGrievy, dietitian for the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, has composed a list of what to eat and what to avoid when trying to take a bite out of stress.
"The best solution? Low-fat, high-fiber, carbohydrate-rich meals with plenty of fruits and vegetables," said Turner-McGrievy, whose nonprofit group studies diet and health. "They soothe us without sapping our energy."
Foods to include:
-- High-fiber, carbohydrate-rich dishes, such as baked sweet potatoes, minestrone soup and rice stir fry. These foods provide a feeling of fullness without a heavy calorie load.
-- Fruits and vegetables, especially antioxidant-rich squash and carrots. And don't forget citrus fruits, which are packed with vitamin C.
Foods to avoid:
-- High-fat foods, such as meats and cheeses, which take more energy to digest and can prompt lethargic, tired feelings.
-- Caffeine, which can interrupt sleep and make it difficult to relax.
-- Simple sugars (such as white sugar), which cause blood sugar levels to rise and crash quickly.
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