Health is wealth. Because of this age-old adage alone, so many of us invest in activities and services that help maintain a healthy lifestyle, such as our favorite gym membership card, access to urgent care, and meeting with the family physician for regular checkups. And chief among these health-related factors is food, the one thing that keeps us energized, full, and ready to face the day ahead of us, filling our bodies with all of that much-needed nutrients.
However, if there’s one category of food that often goes misunderstood, it is the concept of comfort food, meals that you enjoy for the purpose of smiling after every bite or getting through some rough times. And, say what you will about the downsides, we firmly believe that there’s a lot more to comfort food than just the taste factor that far too few people give it credit for.
Sometimes, A Happy Tummy Is All It Takes
You see, while we all have our preferred methods of coping with problems and managing our troubles, one universal solution that everybody across the globe shares is the love for food and the use of comfort food to wish away the worries of life. And while taking a break or pursuing a change of pace from your daily responsibilities can work wonders, nothing compares to the tender love and care a bite from your favorite snack, meal, or plate of dessert could ever provide.
- Sweets Make Stress Go Away: Firstly, when dealing with work-related stress and pressures from your peers to perform, your brain starts to overheat from too much thinking, and you’re left with nothing but bitter thoughts to your name. Luckily enough, all it takes is a couple of sweets to jump-start a bit of positivity back into your bloodstreams. And even though it’s not a sustainable solution by a long shot, it helps prevent any sudden bursts or fits of anger.
- Nothing Beats Celebrating With A Feast: Besides using comfort food as preventive measures against negative emotions, they’re also the perfect companion when celebrating milestones and events in your life. Sure, some would argue that going on trips and visiting different places can one-up the deliciousness factor, but nothing comes close to having a feast for Thanksgiving or popping a bottle of wine for New Year’s Eve. And if you’re more on the prudent side of things, even a good homemade burger can complete a personal achievement.
- Food Connects People And Builds Bonds: Lastly, there’s just a certain magic that comes with comfort food that connects people and builds strong bonds when sharing the same delicious meals after a long day at work or just getting together as friends. Now, we understand that eating with your buddies isn’t the only way of establishing a friendship, but the mix of flavors and a good time never hurt anybody. Plus, some of the best moments in life are remembered with the taste of something flavorful.
Of Course, It Doesn’t Hurt To Make Things A Bit Healthier
Likewise, we can’t overlook that not too many comfort food options exactly align with the goals of living a healthy lifestyle. When you go over some of the common choices like ice cream, all sorts of cakes, and various desserts, it points out a clear love for superb amounts of sugar and fat. So, before you double down on making that mac and cheese, we recommend exploring some healthier mix-ups for your meals.
- Switch Things Up With Natural Sweeteners: If you prefer making your sweets and desserts by hand, instead of using up all that sugar for your recipes, why not consider switching it out for something natural like honey? You see, honey is a lot sweeter, so you’ll use less than usual, plus it’s unrefined and packed with vitamins to help combat the weight gain.
- Tossing In Some Fruits And Veggies: While sprinkling a bit of green or adding some fruit to your plate aren’t your typical comfort food choices, there are plenty of recipes out there that make the most out of a variety of ingredients that taste just as good but fill you up the healthy way. For example, squash and kale pasta is an excellent take on Italian cuisine, or maybe even creating a unique pesto sauce from scratch to change up your diet.
- Explore Different Cultures’ Comfort Food: Last but not least, another way of making your comfort food a lot healthier than they look now is by exploring your options with different cultures. Sometimes, all it takes is to expand your worldview on food to understand the beauty behind cooking, and you’ll be surprised to find out that there are more than enough healthy comfort food for you to choose from when you explore outside your country.
Food Isn’t About Surviving; It’s About Living To The Fullest!
Overall, we think that treating comfort food like a bad thing is one of the worst ways to look at food because enjoying a meal shouldn’t be about surviving but living to the fullest. So instead of picking at your calorie counter 24/7, it wouldn’t hurt to have some fun with your dishes now and then.