Comfort food is defined as:
– a food prepared in a traditional style having a usually nostalgic or sentimental appeal. <Merriam-websters>
– is food prepared traditionally that may have a nostalgic or sentimental appeal, or simply provide an easy-to-eat, easy-to-digest meal rich in calories, nutrients, or both. <Wikipedia>
I liked the last part of the Wiki one: “rich in calories”… to me that’s the defining purpose of comfort food something that you will eat now that’s making you feel good that you will feel 100% guilty/bad about later. For GM it’s Hot Dogs amongst a laundry list of other things that she can’t enjoy since moving out of the US, like crab cakes, corn bread & pumpkin pie & like GM, Michelle’s comfort food would be Mac-n-cheese & perhaps her fast food addiction you can tack McDonald’s on there. I would have to say my BIGGEST comfort food is McDonald’s French Fries & prehaps Pizza. Since moving to the mid-west and away from the ‘city’ all of these places are not readily available to me anymore. I sat and cried for 3 days while pregnant with my 1st son because I craved Little Ceasers Cheese Pizza that bad & we didn’t have a ‘town’ trip planned for another 2-3 weeks. So I’ve had to exchange for other comfort foods like M&Ms and Combos… which ironically enough I have food allergies to both and usually end up regretting eating both when I’m laying on the couch with a terrible Migraine.
Is it worth it??
Well.. I’m a Mom with 3 boys and some days are just better than others and some days you just feel like you might need a crutch to get you through. In 1977 Webster’s dictionary published a line stating that “Comfort foods may be consumed to positively pique emotions, to relieve negative psychological effects or to increase positive feelings.” Psychological studies have shown that Comfort food consumption has been seen as a response to emotional stress, and consequently, as a key contributor to the epidemic of obesity in the United States.
They have further studies stating that consumption of comfort food is triggered in men by positive emotions, and by negative ones in women, which is reasoning for Happy Hours and such.
For Me Comfort Food is just that… COMFORT, but usually 4 hours after eating it I’m not feeling as ‘comfortable’ in my stomach or my head. So with all of that I will say this, if you have had a REALLY long hard day and you feel like you’ve been beat down to the ground and a small fry in the drive through or a small helping of Mac-n-cheese or a Hot dog is some how going to make it all better. Then don’t be afraid to fall off the band wagon once-in-a-while. It’s part of the history of ‘band-wagons’ you have to fall off so you can jump back on. Keep your head up and remember, one day of ruining calories won’t demise your entire goal. Saying ‘No’ to comfort foods is hard but remembering to choose to have a good day and choose to have a good attitude despite the rest will help you not feel the need for them. Also, remember excercise creates positive feelings, endorphins, thus no need for comfort foods. Try taking a long walk/jog instead of reaching for the fries next time, I’m going to.