Addiction is an extreme condition that makes the whole body suffer. Addicts often put their own needs last. They may be extremely malnourished and deficient in nutrients essential to good health and performance. Common health problems include digestive distress, lowered immunity, gut dysbiosis, and inflammation not caused by bacteria. What occurs in the digestive tract may have tremendous impacts on what occurs in the mind and the healing process. It can help with recovery or slow it down. Let’s discuss the power of good nutrition in recovery.
Help your recovery
Early recovery is aided by good nutrition, which helps restore energy and mental clarity, as well as strengthens the immune system. Adequate nourishment may also:
- improve appetite
- boost mood
- enhance health
One of the primary objectives of treatment is to replenish beneficial bacteria in the digestive tract while eliminating harmful ones. If you are in the midst of early recovery, it is essential to be patient with yourself and to take things slowly. It takes time to replace bad habits with good ones. Good aftercare is an excellent way to ensure long-term well-being and a good first step to a better future.
Brain-gut axis is important
One of the things we should note – the stomach has been called “our second brain” for its role in the production of neurotransmitters and neuropeptides. Those are the molecules that have significant effects on mental health and behavior. This connection is so important that scientists have named it a brain-gut axis. Also, the swirling of neurotransmitters is what makes the physical basis of every addiction. That only helps us prove the power of good nutrition in recovery.
Talking to someone about eating well is crucial throughout recovery from drug or alcohol abuse. A reputable treatment facility will give nutritional education and adhere to patients’ dietary restrictions and suggestions. But first, before starting your journey to mindfulness, you must realize that there are immediate actions you may take.
A lot of sugar complicates any disease—addictions included
Limit your consumption of sugary drinks and snacks like candies, pastries, and desserts that are high in fat and calories. Sugar addiction is common among those in recovery, and the symptoms are strikingly similar to those of alcohol withdrawal. According to experts at Bright Futures Treatment Center, sugar should be eliminated from the diet at all costs since it promotes bacterial growth and is a major contributor to metabolic problems, including hypertension and stroke.
Sugar consumption has also been linked by some researchers to the development of cancer. So, make sure to substitute complex carbohydrates, which are slowly absorbed by the body. A good alternative can be vegetables, legumes, nuts, and whole grains, for sugar, high-fructose corn syrup, and other simple carbs. Instead of cotton candy, try an apple from your local market, and you’ll see a major difference.
The power of good nutrition in recovery lies in boosting the immune system
Your immune system is an army that protects your body while you sleep, work, and in every other second of your life. Long-term substance abuse destroys that army. As a result, you’ll be prone to more illnesses, and your body will be so exhausted that it might look for some other instant relief.
Antioxidants are your best friends
In order to restore a depleted immune system, consuming a diet rich in antioxidant-rich fresh fruits and vegetables (or minimally cooked vegetables) is essential. Take advantage of the strong anti-oxidant activity of fresh herbs like parsley and rosemary by using large quantities. Blueberries, Goji berries, and Acai berries, all considered “superfoods,” are thought to have a similar effect.
Heavily processed food will slow down the recovery
Heavily processed food makes your guts work harder without actual nutrients as a result. You’ll feel their tiring effects on your guts all the way to your brain through the aforementioned axis. You’ll feel more tired and unmotivated to make any progress. So, refrain from eating items that have been heavily processed as much as you can. You should strive to eat more foods that are as near to their natural condition as possible, known as whole foods.
Also, never go too long without eating. Start your day off well with a balanced breakfast of protein and carbs. Healthy carbs offer energy and help prevent “energy dips” and the need to eat or drink sugary “uplifters,” while proteins are potent building blocks that nourish the recuperating brain. To restore your body to its optimal cell composition, you should take nutritional supplements, preferably based on focused laboratory examinations.
Consume protein, but plant-based
To keep your energy up and your blood sugar levels stable between meals, eat some nutritious, protein-rich snacks. Try a hard-boiled egg, some almonds, pumpkin seeds, trail mix, Greek yogurt, or some granola for a quick bite. Avoiding all animal products is something that some researchers and dietitians advise (Vitamin B 12 substitution is recommended in this case).
Keep your cardiovascular system clean
A good working cardiovascular system is imperative for a quality lifestyle. It’s important that it works and functions perfectly in order to be able to provide enough oxygen and glucose to your brain. If it doesn’t, it might be significantly more challenging for your brain to work and put effort into recovery. Don’t clog your arteries with fried meals, ice cream, margarine, or professionally baked pastries. Olive oil, almonds, flax seeds, avocados, walnuts, and cold-water fish like salmon and trout are all great examples of healthy fats to add to your diet.
As you can see, the power of good nutrition in recovery is quite significant. Of course, it’s not a magical solution and won’t make you fully recover on its own. But it’s a good start. Healthy nutrients can be your greatest physical ally when escaping a vicious substance abuse cycle.
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