The Power of Comfort Food

I once said “I only eat ice cream out of the tub when I have my heart broken”. True story. I am also known for drinking half a bottle of Tequila when I cry… parenting can be tough - is this a problem for ALL parents? Bag of chips, soda and dessert; it all makes sense when you’re feeling down. Why is it that filling our body with non-nourishing food tricks us into thinking we’re whole? We yearn for things, people, pets, places, memories… we feel sad, we are overcome with emotions; and somehow, chocolate manages to creep slowly and carefully into our thoughts. Comfort food can also be something we tasted or smelled at a certain moment in our lives. If life is just an instant, and an instant is existing; we want to recreate that feeling we embraced. We want to exist, to capture a moment in time. This could be tea or water with fresh fruit, freshly cut cucumber, etc. For me, ice cream-in-the-tub is not even having the intention of making an effort to use serving utensils. What’s the point? I don’t care how much I eat or how I eat. I just want to give in to e.a.t., and feel my feelings while I eat my ice cream, and cry, ugly cry. I am giving in to feeling miserable. That’s ok, I can move on after that. At the same time, I want to break free of pain. I need to get out of imagining and get into reality. We create neural pathways that become stronger with repetition, so every time my heart breaks and I reach for that ice cream, the pathway becomes stronger with the greater number of times the brain cells engage to conduct the activity. I get triggered. My heart feels sadness or fear and the pathways tell me to get away. Traumas are there to tell you there are things you don’t like. Feelings also trigger wanting, no, needing that comfort food. There’s nothing wrong with comfort food… as long as there is learning, and you create a new pathway for healing and focus on growing. The brain is a wonderful tool. Imagine the possibilities and power we have to enhance our lives, knowing we have the ability to shape our brain in ways that create greater wellbeing both for the mind and body. Live the instant in a positive way to leave a neural pathway you will recreate leaving you that feel-good feeling.