Comfort foods are the best way to explain the relation between food and happiness. Why does the thought of a steaming mug of coffee and a plate of fritters bring a smile to your face when it is raining? Is it just because they taste good or is it because of the happy memories associated with them? Or is it just because we have intense food cravings during our period? Even before the taste buds are awakened, it is the aroma of food that heightens our senses and comforts us.
Comfort foods are a kind of self medication when your mood is drooping, especially on the dreaded first day of the period. A bag of fries, a bar of dark chocolate or spicy tacos? What lifts your spirits when you are feeling low? We asked our Nua family about their go-to comfort foods in the period days and here are their favorites.
A prized commodity grown in select regions around the world, chocolate certainly is an example of happiness growing on trees. Recommended by Dipabali (@dipabalibose) who ‘loves’ chocolate, its universal appeal transcends cuisines and cultures.
Why is it a go-to favorite for your period cravings? Yashika (@yashika9194) explains it. Well, ‘for those of us who do not feel like eating anything’, she says, ‘chocolates turn out be relievers! Half melted chocolates glide into your tummy and ooze out the pain! Just like silk. So if are among those who wish for something to go into the tummy automatically without munching on something’, this is the answer. Craving dark chocolate for comfort? Go for it! Take a bite of heaven and satisfy that sweet tooth.
Just holding a warm beverage in your hand can have a comforting effect. Tea can relieve cramps and soothe your body. No wonder @raidaa_1423 mentions that she has ‘lot of tea and coffee and does not want to eat.’ If you want to cool down instead, Alefiya (@alefiyachangi) endorses sweet lime juice. It provides a kick from lime and energy from sugar.
Did you know that chocolate was a beverage for thousands of years before it reincarnated as our beloved bars? That steaming mug of hot chocolate you love, traces its way back to the Aztecs. It continued to be the drink of royalty when the Spanish carried it to Europe. Ayushi (@Ayusshiiyadav) suggests drinking hot chocolate and if you want something filling to go with it, grab a brownie. Komal (@komal_tomarz) complements her tea and coffee with ‘rosgulla‘. Speaking of rosgulla, we got a bunch of recommendations in the sweets category.
According to a study, women feel guilty about eating comfort foods while men treat it like a reward. Most comfort foods are high in sugar and robust with energy. Harini (@rinibot) vouches for the hot caramello pudding from the Corner House Ice Creams! Sugar is the best source of energy and hence the craving for sugar is almost evolutionary.
As the calorie requirements fluctuate throughout the month, so must the intake. Not surprising Summy(@summy0077) points out she wishes for ‘Sweets..and sweets!…all the time….in only those days I crave for sweets..otherwise it’s not my choice.’ Koyel (@Koyel_roy) has her heart set on Nutella. Hirni(@Sincerelyxh_) takes the cake when it comes to sweet accompaniments. She complements her ‘steaming mug of cappuccino with cupcakes, donuts, ice cream and waffles’.
Salt and spice
Even if you want to avoid milk at this time, cheese can be a fairly tempting substitute. Kr!shi (@Kriishiipatel) speaks for so many of us when she mentions ‘cheesy food’. There is a wide variety of foods that incorporate cheese in some form. Hirni (@Sincerelyxh_) adds to it by proposing ‘extra cheesy’ fries. Proposal accepted.
Some of us find comfort not just in sweets but also the heat of spicy foods. For some this stands shoulder to shoulder with chocolate cravings. Meredith (@meredith_correyo) hits the mark when she says, ‘Dark chocolate and loads of Tacos – trust me ladies, it works like a charm :)’ Yes Meredith, Plate of tacos with tortillas and hot salsa? Unbeatable. The fiery and strong taste of spice lingers in the mouth. Spicy foods just like chocolate or sugar release endorphins which relieve stress and satisfy period cravings.
The healthy Comfort Foods
If you are looking for healthy comfort food, we got those nominations too. Sara says, ‘I usually have dry fruits (nuts, cashews and almonds mostly) and fresh fruit’. Dry fruits rank high on taste. There must be some you like if not the entire gamut. Walnuts, pistachios, almonds, raisins, pecans, cashews, grab them anytime and munch anywhere, on the way to work, at the office desk or in the classroom too. If you like fresh fruit pick those rich in iron and magnesium. They can ease the period troubles a bit.
Did we miss something? Leave a comment about your favourite comfort food for your period cravings below.