It is healthy eating week, and while most of you may think I am going to ramble on about eating the “right” foods, I thought I would talk about comfort food.
Comfort food is real. It is wonderful, it's soothing, and it makes us human. Comfort food is well, comforting. It either brings upon nostalgia, great memories, feels great in our belly’s, or simply soothes the mind when we are stressed. It can be anything from your mom’s Indian curry to pizza from your favourite Italian restaurant.
Comfort foods, and eating, have got a bad rep. And while I agree with you that it is probably not a good idea for it to be your only coping mechanism, I also do think it is a wonderful thing. Imagine if we took diet culture out of the equation. By this I mean, no guilt after eating comfort food. What remains is an effective coping mechanism that you can reliably depend on to help you feel better. I think that’s kind of amazing.
How does this fit in with healthy eating? Personally, I believe to live and eat healthily, our favourite foods need to be included and enjoyed regularly (without guilt). A study conducted by McGill University found that individuals who have positive emotions in regards to comfort food were more likely to pick healthier options. A common misconception is that comfort foods are unhealthy, but that is not always the case. Instead, comfort food is solely based on what people find comforting.
The narrative around comfort food is often so negative. So, let's celebrate it! What is your favourite comfort food?