We Love Comfort Food Because We Love The Person Who Cooks It, So If You Like People, You Like Food

You see it in the movies all the time. Two people meet. Two people date. They break up. Dumpee sits on the couch, cries eyes out, and wallows in sorrow with a big tub of ice cream. People eat when they’re sad. It happens. A recent study published in Appetite, found that comfort food might not be just a myth. In fact, comfort food is comforting because we love the person cooking it.

Shira Gabriel and her team from SUNY-Buffalo and the University of the South, found a link between food and social lives. People who enjoyed comfort food tend to form secure and positive relationships with others over people who didn’t enjoy comfort food. All in all, if you like people, you like food.

Gabriel and her team first asked participants to rate their ability to form emotional bonds. Then, they asked half of the participants to recall a fight they had with someone close to them. At the end, everyone was given potato chips. The study found that people who thought themselves as having secure emotional relationship bonds found the potato chips to be tastier than those who felt their emotional bonds were weak.

Further research had people filling out daily food diaries for two weeks. In addition to recording what and how much they ate, participants were also told to indicate how lonely they felt. In the end, researchers found that the people who formed strong emotional bonds were more likely to eat comfort foods on their lonely days.

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On the flip side, others argue that comfort food is just a myth. According to Medical Daily, a study done by researchers at the University of Minnesota found that people tend to give credit where credit isn't due. Feelings of negativity will eventually go away with time. It makes no difference whether you're sitting at home twiddling your thumbs until the pain goes away, or covering it up with a bag of Cheetos.

Regardless of what you decide to do after a breakup or when the feelings of isolation hits, you can always count on the fact that there won't be any shortages of ice cream, cookies or mac and cheese to help ease that loneliness.

Images: Fotolia; Giphy