When you’re feeling blue or stressed, do you ever try to eat your feelings? You might think that a bowl of ice cream or large order of fries is going to help, but chances are it won’t.
A new study published on APA PsychNet found that comfort food isn’t really very comforting. Jill Ettinger at our sister site Eat Drink Better wrote about the study’s setup and how researchers determined whether you can eat your feelings to improve your mood.
The gist, though, is that what really improves your mood is time. That slice of pie or bag of chips might help you pass that time, but the food isn’t really doing anything for you.
And you know that finding the bottom of a pint of ice cream is only going to make you feel terrible later on. You’re much better off passing the time more constructively. Go for a walk, watch some terrible TV, or phone a friend. Rather than try to feed junk food to your feelings, here are a few more alternate mood-boosting ideas:
+ If you are going to eat, opt for true mood-boosting foods.
+ Practice an uplifting yoga pose, like camel.
As Ettinger pointed out in her piece on this study, there is a growing body of research showing that you can’t really eat your feelings, but you can opt for a diet that promotes a better overall mood. She recommends choosing a diet rich in healthy fruits and veggies. Because there’s actual science linking a plant-rich diet with happiness.