A-Z Challenge; C is for Comfort Food

Comfort Food I would be willing to wager that every single one of us has a comfort food.  At least one food that reminds us of a time or place in our lives or a person we love, like mom or grandma, maybe dad who knows, and when we are feeling down and out, whatever is our chosen comfort food can raise our spirits and make us smile. At least for a while and if we don’t over do it.  Problem is, we often do and that is why C- is for Comfort food on the A-Z April Blogging Challenge  – my list of things that are good in theory, possibly  bad in reality and

Today’s Mental Moment…

is about how comfort food is good but can go bad too. Not like spoiling go bad.  All food does that, I mean how comfort food is good for the soul but if we get carried away with the a little is good more is better thought, the idea is not such a good one. But you probably knew that already right? Ok so moving on… Comfort food while being obviously food that makes us feel all cozy and warm fuzzes when we indulge is also typically, there are of course exceptions to the rule, high in fat, sugar and carbohydrates. Good examples of comfort foods are;

Macaroni and cheese in a white bowl.

  • Macaroni and Cheese (seems homemade is most popular for the comfort category)
  • ice cream
  • Pastries
  • bread
  • chocolate
  • cookies
  • cake
  • mashed potatoes
  • cheesy anything
  • need I go on?

I bet you can;t guess what my favorite comfort food is.  No.  Wait, I mean I bet you know what it is, especially if you have been around this blog for more than a month or two.

donut, donut hole

not a hint ..coincidence

The reason comfort foods usually fall into the high fat and sugar content is because it provides a quick pick-you-up as carbs are a source of instant fuel for our bodies, and the sugar gives a little rush while the fats fill our tummies, soothing the pangs of hunger (real or imagined as often emotional hunger is felt as physical hunger)  and leaving us feeling satisfied.

So we feel blue – lonely depressed or just not happy, and we notice when we eat foods that are high in fat and sugar we feel better, thus we associate these foods with comfort and feeling better and eventually, without thinking consciously, we reach for them when we are feeling bad.  Or PMSing.  That is a good time for comfort foods too.  We are in effect, self-medicating without even realizing or considering it is just a band-aid for a bigger issue.

It usually does help PMS though.  Just saying.

So anyways, we eat our choice of comfort,  we feel better so we eat more.  If some is good more is better.  right?

wellll….

Consider This;

Carbohydrates are readily burned as instant energy in the body but if we eat more than our body can burn, they are immediately stored as fat.  Do not pass go, do not buy skinny jeans.

If we are not mindful of the cycle of feeling low, eating comfort foods, eating more to feel even better, the self medicating can get quickly out of hand.  Just like a drug.  And you don’t necessarily have to be an addict to see the results or to Jones for donuts.

What happens with more is we start to feel guilt in addition to feeling kinda icky and full and bleh, we associate food with feelings rather than eating to survive and oh my what a mess…

Why did I think comfort food is a good idea in theory that has gone bad in reality?  Well in the United States, the obesity rate is out of control and we are the fattest country in the world.

A lot of our cool little traditional kiwi bake...

There is nothing wrong with indulging now and then and nothing wrong with taking some comfort out of your food, but stop and think before you eat, stop and think again before you have more.  Are you really hungry?  Do you think 2 Big Macs will help solve your problems?  Are you aware of what you are trying to put a band-aid over?

Just those things knowing how and why and whether you are truly hungry or emotionally hungry, can make all the difference in controlling the amount and types of comfort food you eat.

If you eat salad for comfort – well go ahead and eat all you want.. without the eggs cheese. meat or um…dressing its a great thing to graze on.  But I have never met anyone who considers plain salad a comfort food, not to say there isn’t someone, and too bad it isn’t more of us.  It just doesn;t have the right stuff.  In the short-term anyways.  In the long-term the salad eaters are going to feel better than the mac and cheese and donut eaters of the world.

True Story.

One more thing that makes comfort food hit my list, because we love it (whatever it is ) so much, we try to substitute lower fat and or sugar ingredients and while that is ok when you are eating it to eat it because you think it really sounds appealing for dinner, if you are looking for comfort, it just isn;t as good.

Despite my best efforts

Which means you might  eat more and that cancels out the benefits of the low-fat substitute.  If you are blue, or PMSing, and you know it, eat the real thing.  In moderation.

Be sure and have lots of napkins to wipe your fingers when you are done too.. I just got donut crumbs and sprinkles on my keyboard.  It’s not so easy to type with that stuff all over the place.  I am gonna go and clean it up.

After I eat the jelly one..

and the… huh?  Oh yea..  never mind.

To Your Mental State, whatever it may be.

butterfliespurpleflit

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27 responses to “A-Z Challenge; C is for Comfort Food

  1. I almost did comfort food and it would have fit after aromatic memory. Instead I did the caveman diet and comfort of a different sort. AA-ZZ for me. I must be nuts or else I was having a mental moment.

    MJ

    • lol – we will go with mental moment although nuts is not so bad ;-) I thought about you when I was doing this post – your Aromatic Memory is stuck in my memory and def a comfort food .. I will be over your way later to see what the caveman diet is.. meat? Well i will soon find out. :-)

  2. It may sound strange but Tuna Casserole or pork chops with mushroom gravy, mashed potatoes and corn.
    And for dessert a whole batch of Tapioca pudding all to myself.
    Tapioca pudding, mmmmmmmm

    • I make the best tapioca pudding – my nana taught me how and I have spent years getting it perfect.. really.. I just made a batch for easter but I have to make 5 x the recipe for my family and it was gone faster than it took to make. You make awesome cookies – I think we would be in trouble if we lived close to each other..so good to see you Carrie.. I need to come visit and see what you are up to – I am sorry I haven;t been doing that much at all but I think about you often. Hope you are well.. I’ll send you my recipe but you have to keep it top secret ;-) HUGS ♥

    • that’s not weird – it actually sounds yummy – and still has sugar..natural yes and you’d have to eat a hell of a lot of them but I can see it. Is it tied to a memory or person? Just curious. Mine are donuts and then cheese anything..if its ooey gooey ..on bread..but really my number one top all time favorite is..cream of wheat or shredded wheat cereal..with sugar. It has to do with a healing time in my life so it is comforting and low fat ..if I don;t put the cream on it or something ;-)

  3. You’re right fattening for sure….chips and dip!..Fortunately when I ate it the most I was young and didn’t gain weight…..but now I do have for the most part some sense of self-control. I must admit though when I am feeling a bit ‘down’ chips and dip and oh did I mention cola….of course now I drink the diet cola..makes up for the calories in the chips and dip….lol Diane

    • oooo chips are the best when I want salty stuff…we get these ones called… I don;t remember but when I want something salty and sour…malt vinegar chips are yummo! I get the cola thing too.. I gave all of it up becuase the diet stuff… I actually got to the point i was drinking so much diet cola – it made me sick..like really sick.. so now I stick to water and iced tea…and um..coffee with tons of cream and ..sugar :oops:

      • I know the ‘diet’ cola is not good because of the aspartame but I drink only when I get that urge for something cold with fizz…I stopped using the diet sweeteners when everything came out about the aspartame …..Diane

      • that’s good – i was drinking waaayyy too much and couldnt figure out why i couldnt keep anything down and was nauseaous all the time … i quit drinking diet cola and had just water… and started eating and feeling better and still lost 15 lbs without trying..

    • darnit – lasagna…this post wasn;t a good idea.. I had to stop doing comments cause everyone is telling me their favorite foods and that’s great but …i am HUNGRY! emotionally – if that makes a difference I know that or not… P used to make the best lasagna..I gotta stop talking about it. Puffy or crunchy?

    • I never was one for shepherd’s pie but I didn;t have the good kind until a few years ago.. and I can say I totally see it.. yup..

      why is my mouth watering?

  4. Ooh my diet!!! LoL!!! :)

    I’m overweight by 7kg, but I hope to have that down to 98Kg in a year or two! :)

    Too many comfort foods!!! LoL!!!

    Love and hugs!

    Prenin.

    • Ack! I have no idea how that translates to ..what ever system we use here… but don;t beat yourself up.. food can be one of the enjoyments of life..Hugs :-)

  5. I wish I had a comfort food. After the migraines, I eat chocolate more and more infrequently. Come to think of it… I eat everything more and more infrequently. My special food is Oriental. Not really particular which nationality, but gobs of veggies and shrimp. If I had a sweet I would eat with regularity, it would have to be my mother’s pecan pie with the chocolate crust. Otherwise, I am sticking to rice in milk or rice pudding.
    xxx

    • I made it ! to the end of the comments without more than 3 donuts..ug.. I go in spurts not eating, eating sweets, eating all fresh food…cereal.. the cream of wheat is pure soothing and healing comfort to me… I am trying to change my diet.. less sugar more fruit and veggies.. now that I am thinking about it though all i want is ..more donuts. ;-)

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