The Importance of Nutrition in Addiction Recovery

individuals learning the importance of nutrition in addiction recovery

The Importance of Nutrition in Addiction Recovery

By Lakeview Health
Lakeview Health
Published: December 2, 2020

A healthy diet can’t take the place of comprehensive addiction treatment. Detox, counseling, and aftercare are musts if you want to beat your addictions for good. However, your diet can have a significant impact on your recovery, helping you get over addiction faster and easier than would have otherwise been possible. Eating healthy foods helps stabilize neurotransmitters in your body, so depression, anxiety, and stress don’t lead to a relapse. As an added benefit, they also heal your body from the physical damage of substance abuse by enabling you to absorb the nutrients you need to get healthy. 

Nutrition: The Foundation of Effective Addiction Treatment

What does a healthy diet look like? The nutritionists at Lakeview Health, in line with the USDA, recommend a diet that is in line with the following:

  • Meals with a minimum of 50% fruit or vegetable content
  • Ensuring at least half of all the grains you eat are whole grains such as brown rice, whole-wheat bread, crackers, oats, etc. 
  • Eating a variety of proteins. These include red meat, white meat, cheese, eggs, and legumes.
  • Avoiding foods with high sugar, fat, and/or salt content

In terms of consuming liquids, you should avoid sugary drinks as much as possible. They will wreak havoc on your health while giving you a caffeine buzz that could make it hard to get a good night’s sleep. Instead, drink plenty of water as your body needs it to stay healthy and in good shape. If you find water too “plain,” you can give yourself a boost by purchasing water with a natural flavor such as lime or berry. 

Nutrition and Addiction Treatment: Getting Started

Starting a healthy eating plan right after leaving addiction rehab may seem daunting. It’s important not to overwhelm yourself, but you can start small. Next time you go shopping, for instance, select fruit instead of sugary snacks. Choose ready-made salads that don’t require preparation. Pick up a few loaves of whole-grain bread instead of white bread. 

If you have experience with cooking, dust off the cookbooks and try out a few simple recipes. If you’re new to making your own food, look up some simple recipes online. Preparing your own food can be a self-esteem booster by helping you master new skills that will improve your life in the long-term.

What About Relapses after Addiction Treatment?

It’s not easy to stick to a nutritious diet. If you slip up, don’t berate yourself. Just start over and make better choices the next time. 

If you continually make poor nutritional choices, try to identify the root of the problem. For example, if you like to snack while you work, considering bringing fruit or a healthy treat from home to your office. If you enjoy snacking at night, be sure to have fruit or vegetable sticks readily available. 

If you’re in counseling, talk to your counselor about your diet. They can help you identify thought patterns and habits that lead to bad eating habits and make suggestions to help you improve. 

Learn More About Addiction Treatment at Lakeview Health

Holistic addiction treatment, combined with good nutrition habits, can boost your recovery and physical health. That’s why Lakeview offers well-rounded addiction treatment programs to help people of all ages and walks of life kick addictions for good. Our Jacksonville, Florida center has gender-responsive programs to ensure your specific needs are being met throughout your treatment. What’s more, our counseling sessions are tailored to meet your individualized needs. 

Lakeview has a track record for providing effective addiction treatment for those who have suffered trauma in the past. Our team has handled people with many different troubling experiences and helped each person recover and lead a healthy, fulfilling life. Our programs include:

Addiction can be devastating, but it doesn’t have to ruin your life. If you want personalized, confidential help to get on the path of recovery, feel free to get in touch with us by filling out our secure online form or by calling 866.704.7692. We look forward to providing you with the practical assistance and care you need to overcome addiction issues and achieve long-term recovery.