Are Comfort Foods Really Comforting?

From the Show: Train Your Body
Summary: Mac 'n cheese, chips, and chocolate: all tasty comfort foods you eat to treat yourself. But are doing more harm than good?
Air Date: 10/21/14
Duration: 10
Host: Melanie Cole, MS
Guest Bio: Jennifer Sacheck, PhD
Screen shot 2012-05-03 at 10.57.05 AM Jen in blue pearl 1Dr. Jennifer Sacheck is an Associate Professor of Nutrition at the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University. She also holds a faculty appointment in the Tisch College of Citizenship at Tufts. Dr. Sacheck earned her Master's degree in Exercise Science, her Ph.D. in Nutrition Science from Tufts University, and completed a post-doctoral fellowship at Harvard Medical School in muscle physiology. She is a Fellow of the American College of Sports Medicine and an active member of The Obesity Society.

Dr. Sacheck's research focuses on the impact of both diet and physical activity on health across the lifespan. Past research studies include examining the effects of nutrition and exercise on muscle inflammation and repair in young and older adults and on fitness and cardiovascular disease risk factors in children. With funding from the National Institutes of Health, Dr. Sacheck is currently conducting a large clinical trial on vitamin D deficiency and associated health risks in youth. Other current research includes examining the impact of physical activity and cognitive health. She has authored several pivotal reports on obesity and physical inactivity in New England and was an appointed member of the Institute of Medicine's committee on Fitness and Health Outcomes in Youth. She teaches courses on Exercise Physiology and Nutritional Biochemistry to graduate students at the Friedman School. Dr. Sacheck also recently co-authored her first book on nutrition, fitness and health, Thinner This Year. She is a competitive Masters level rower and avid runner and frequently speaks to athletes of all ages on optimizing nutrition for performance.
Are Comfort Foods Really Comforting?
Comfort foods, whether you like salty or sugary, can provide an immediate boost... both physically and emotionally. But, what happens to your body about an hour later might make you second guess those quick fixes.

In the long run, making smart choices when it comes to snacks can really benefit your health instead of just putting on extra pounds.

Lots of comfort foods have carbohydrates, which have gotten a bad rap as of late. Some carbs are good and some are bad; but some are necessary. Your body must have some to be healthy.

Vegetables, legumes and even some carbs you get from meat can be beneficial to your well being.

Listen in as Dr.Jennifer Sacheck helps decipher which comfort foods actually comfort you for the long run.