That decadent brownie, fried chicken and creamy ice cream bring to mind times spent curled up on the couch, happily indulging in our comfort food of choice. What about after the food is gone though? How do we feel then? Usually, like most people, we feel guilty. I know that is how I feel after I have just gobbled up a bar of my favorite chocolate. Comfort foods taste great, we all know that, but are they good for us? I do not believe that the majority of comfort foods are good for us.
When we partake in the eating of comfort foods it is usually because we are needing emotional comfort. After all, that is usually the point of comfort foods. They make us feel safe and happy when the world has done us wrong. When we eat to feel comfort we are doing what is called emotional eating. I know from my own experience that emotional eating is not good in the long run. I gained over one hundred pounds because of emotional eating. Now I am having to fight like crazy in order to get the weight off. Let me tell you, it is not fun!
There are many ways in which comfort foods are not good for us. They are usually nutritionally void for one thing. There are not many important nutrients in french fries or Ben and Jerry’s. It is okay to have a treat once in awhile but using it for comfort is a problem. This can lead to food addictions. This is an addiction that is very hard to break. I am struggling with my own food addiction and emotional eating. I do believe emotional eating is very common, this is why comfort foods are so popular.
I wish we lived in a world where comfort foods were actually good for us. Unfortunately, we do not. It is things like broccoli and brown rice that are good for us. Those foods could hardly be called comfort foods. Unless, you add a bunch of cheese. Then it is really yummy but it is no longer good for our health.
Do not despair, my friend, as healthy foods can be quite palatable when done right. I have learned to make fries from scratch that almost could be called a comfort food. They are healthy and taste really good. I almost prefer them over those greasy fries and the local fast food place. I have replaced my Ben and Jerry’s with a low calorie yogurt. I really can almost believe this is a comfort food. However, with comfort food I can hardly stop myself from eating it. I have not had this problem with my homemade fries or healthy yogurt.
Comfort foods may be good for our souls, at least for the moment. However, they are not good for our health and can cause long term problems. Go ahead and induldge in some favorite comfort foods once in awhile. Just take it easy and remember that comfort foods are not good for us in the long run!