When I first started in Overeaters Anonymous I came away with the idea that comfort foods were a bad thing. For me, at the time, they certainly weren’t a good thing considering my comfort foods were also all my trigger/binge foods.

For the past 15 years I’ve struggled with all those comfort foods, wanting them, denying them, trying to control them, being controlled by them, fighting with them, and finally truly abstaining from them.

I used to go to great lengths to justify my intake of those foods. Making them from scratch. Controlling all the ingredients. Eating them only when homemade. Not allowing second helpings. You name the rationalization I used it.

But in the past 15 months on this new food plan I haven’t really even wanted any of those foods. I remember being at my husband’s company holiday party last winter and the catering included some of my classic trigger foods. A friend was trying to coax me into eating some of it and I said, “Do you see me in this dress? Do you think I’m going to blow this on that?!” She laughed and applauded my determination. But the truth was I really just didn’t want it.

These past few months have been stressful. These past two weeks have been particularly bad. I teetered on the edge with some sugar free candy last week but didn’t give into it – didn’t buy it, didn’t eat it. But I have been needing comfort and food is one of the places everyone looks to for comfort.

This morning I realized what my new comfort food is: scrambled eggs with fat-free deli turkey and cheddar cheese. This is a meal that is 100% on plan for me and I don’t have any emotional issues with it. So, I spent some time reflecting on what makes it a comfort food for me now and I think I figured it out. The weird part is it is very simple.

It makes me feel full, satisfied, and nourished while being very tasty so I enjoy eating it.

A Greek salad with olives and feta with chicken on top does the same thing. So does ground turkey seasoned with taco seasoning and topped with low-fat cheddar and low-fat sour cream. A hot cup of Constant Comment tea with an oat bran, flax, and egg white muffin hits it too.

These are all foods that helped me lose weight all last year. They are foods that are helping me maintain my weight now. These foods bring me comfort and the amazing thing is, unlike my old comfort foods that brought comfort only for the time I was chewing and swallowing and then resulted in additional emotional pain, these new comfort foods really do comfort me by helping me and keeping me at a healthy weight.

Good food that makes me feel good and I enjoy. I think that’s comfort I can embrace.