The Importance of Nutrition During Addiction Recovery

The Importance of Nutrition During Addiction Recovery

The nutrients that you put into your body are of crucial importance once you have started down the path of recovery. Perhaps you have just finished an alcohol or drug rehab program, or maybe you are several months into living a life that is addiction free. Either way, the choices that you make when it comes to your food and drink can either help or hinder your recovery. Whilst you probably recognize the effects that addiction had on your psychological health and personal life, like many other recovering addicts you may not realize the toll that it has took on your body. Here’s why nutrition is so important.

Malnutrition

Substance addiction often goes hand in hand with malnourishment. For those who are addicted to alcohol, drinking often leads to a feeling of fullness, which results in many alcoholics failing to eat a diet that is nutrient-rich and living entirely off the empty calories found in alcoholic beverages. Drug abusers often become so obsessed with getting their next fix that they do not eat, and the diet of many addicts is one that is tough on a digestive system that is already strained. Putting the vital nutrients back into your body is an essential part of recovery.

Immune System Damage

Addiction to alcohol or drugs causes damage to your immune system, making you more prone to and less able to fight off disease. A comprised immune system also increases your risk of developing a number of cancers, which is why when on the path to recovery it’s important to eat foods that will boost and strengthen your immune system. Many drug rehab facilities such as Beachway’s drug rehab will offer nutritional counselling where you can learn more about which are the best antioxidant-rich foods to eat to help your immune system repair.

Avoid Stimulants

If there are certain foods or drinks that you associate with taking drugs or drinking alcohol, it is best to avoid them altogether in order to best minimize your chances of falling into a relapse. It is also a good idea to avoid caffeine and instead drink decaffeinated beverages, as the caffeine found in coffee, tea, some sodas and other drinks such as energy drinks is stimulating, which can lead to fluctuations in mood that make it more difficult to resist cravings for alcohol or drugs.

Diet Overhaul

With all the damage that addiction can do to your body, it may be necessary for you to consider a complete overhaul of your diet. Eating foods that are rich in fiber will help to repair your damaged digestive system, and quality protein intake will help to not only repair your body but also your brain. Eating healthy, nutritious foods will also help you to feel better within yourself and boost your self-esteem, which in return will benefit you on the road to recovery.

If you are a recovering addict in need of further information about nutrition, we recommend that you speak to a dietician or physician as soon as possible.

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