If you are recovering from addiction, then nutrition might not be your top priority at the moment.
You might want to change that.
You've probably been to hell and back again. Facing the most difficult fight of your life.
Coming out the other side of recovering from addiction is, for many, a rebirth. You may be ready to do whatever it takes to not have to go through that again.
How can you set your body up for a healthy future?
It's not surprising that addiction takes a toll on the body's health. The way you nurture your body moving forward will play a role in your overall wellness and quality of life.
Believe it or not, nutrition plays a key part in recovering from addiction.
Truly besting an addiction requires a total lifestyle change. We've gathered together important facts about nutrition and recovery from substance abuse so you can continue down a successful path of recovery and personal care.
Table of Contents
Why Nutrition Is Part of Recovering from Addiction
There is a strong correlation between gut health and addiction. Nutrition experts are noticing strong connections between the rising number of food addictions and the opiate epidemic.
Some say all individuals seeking addiction treatment should also be screened for an eating disorder.
The reason is that in today's world, many children are exposed to unhealthy foods that high in sugar that stimulate the reward system. This harmful relationship with food can turn into an eating disorder and potentially an addiction later in life.
What Does this Mean for a Recovering Addict?
Nutrition for recovering addicts is essential. Oftentimes, addicts recovering from alcohol and drug abuse will turn to other addictive behaviors that are harmful to the body.
For example, many turn to energy drinks, caffeine, nicotine, and sugar. This is substance seeking behavior that results in an unhealthy diet.
Of course many would agree that these habits are a favorable alternative to alcohol and drug abuse. However, practicing healthy nutrition early on will set you up for success.
In fact, an addict is more likely to relapse when they have poor eating habits.
A healthy diet can improve your body and mind, which will further aid in your recovery.
Can Good Nutrition Prevent a Relapse?
Further studies are directly connecting gut health and intestinal permeability with alcohol dependence, depression, and anxiety.
Surprisingly, when the alcohol-dependent subjects went through detox, some of them developed gut leakiness. These patients became increasingly depressed and had stronger alcohol cravings than those who didn't.
It's possible that this is a reason for many alcohol and drug relapses.
There are many signs that there is a direct connection between the gut and the brain. This is why it is so important to learn about healthy nutrition for recovering addicts.
The damage that drugs cause on the body has long term effects that proper nutrition can help to heal.
For example, alcohol directly contributes to liver damage, heroin targets the gastrointestinal organs, and certain stimulants cause malnutrition because they suppress a person's appetite.
Heal Your Body from Within
Nutrition is so important to learn now that you have successfully begun the recovery journey. Now is a time for healing and you can help your body through this process.
You're not alone in this journey.
If you're recovering from an addiction or would like to begin this process, you can find out more about nutrition catered to you at a clinic that specializes in sober living and recovery.
You have a support system waiting whether it is at a clinic, through a nutritionist, or with a personal healthcare provider.
Resources for Your Recovery
Recovering from addiction is an ongoing journey and we offer a variety of resources to assist you in this process.
If you're interested in learning more about changing your lifestyle and improving your health, then check out our ongoing articles that include nutrition and recovery from substance abuse.