The body goes through a lot of wear and tear when a person is addicted to substances. For one, it is expected for the body not to get proper nourishment as healthy and nutritious foods are not part of a person with addiction’s diet. This leaves that individual deficient of vitamins and nutrients necessary for a healthy body.
As one faces the long and challenging road to recovery, healthy nutrition could be detrimental. The lack of nutrients can disrupt the body’s ability to function leading to electrolyte imbalances, vitamin deficiencies, malnutrition, and in severe cases, even death.
The Effect of Addiction and Poor Nutrition
Addiction and bad eating habits generally go together. The unfortunate part is it gets in the way of many essential functions of the body and brain.
It is common among persons suffering from addiction to:
- Fail to eat – People abusing substances will forget to eat while they are under the influence of drug or alcohol. They will also experience a suppressed appetite.
- Eat poorly – Those going through active addiction spend all of their money on substances. This leaves them without means to pay for healthy meals.
The abuse of alcohol and drugs along with the lack of nourishment leads to malnutrition, which manifests through:
- Low body temperature
- Inconsistent heart rate
- Muscle degeneration
- Cognitive impairment
- Suppressed immune system
The Importance of Nutrition
The body and brain need to be properly fed in order to function normally. Food is what fuels the body throughout the entire day as it breaks down the food into glucose. The glucose is then let out into the bloodstream to be utilized as energy or to be stored in the body for later use.
In order to thrive, the body needs a variety of foods. Carbohydrates will give it a short-term burst of energy. It also needs healthy fats and protein that it could use later. The key to a healthy body in addition recovery is a balanced diet.
This need is given great emphasis in luxury rehab centers. They generally provide their patients with great nutritional meals to nourish their minds and bodies as well as help the bodies gather enough strength for the recovery ahead.
Nutrition in Addiction Recovery
A healthy, balanced diet plan is powerful in recovery. The body also needs to heal from the inside out. Recovery will be better, and the patients will feel a big improvement when they get proper nutrition. Among the benefits of a healthy diet in recovery are:
- Physical healing
- Increased energy
- Improved mood
- Stronger immune system
- Better memory
- Reduced risk of getting diseases
Tips on How to Maintain Good Nutrition
Going to the available luxury rehab centers will give you a taste of what good nutrition is like. But this should not end there. Maintaining good nutrition even after leaving a rehab facility is essential.
Here are some tips on how you can keep nourishing your mind and body with good, nutritious food while in recovery:
- Get help from a dietitian – Each person has different nutritional needs. Consulting with a dietitian means your nutritional needs are properly assessed. They will then help you come up with a meal plan.
- Stock up on healthy foods – You need to surround yourself with healthy foods. Otherwise, you will be tempted to munch on those unhealthy processed foods. Help yourself make wise food choices by stocking your refrigerator and pantry with fruits, vegetables, healthy fats, and whole grains.
- Stick to your meal plan – This will help you be mindful of what you eat and the frequency of eating. Allocate a certain day in a week to prepare your meals so that you have easy access to healthy foods for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks.
- Set goals – Goals are very important in everything we do. This is also applicable when it comes to nutrition. If you have nutrition and physical health goals, you will remain accountable and motivated. It is also a great way to keep track of how you are doing.
- Include exercise regimen – It is not enough to eat healthy and nutritious meals. The effort should be paired with an exercise regimen to amp the results. Staying active while in recovery will lessen the feelings of depression and anxiety as well as promote restful sleep.