Peninsula Health Center

The Impact of Nutrition on Addiction Recovery

If you are considering addiction treatment, it is important to understand that outpatient programs give you the freedom to return home after your sessions, which also means they leave the responsibility of choosing what to eat up to you. 

The right nutrition can improve your chances of success in recovery. Good nutrition can make it easier to sleep so that you are well-rested before each of your sessions, improve your mood, and boost your physical and mental well-being.

How Addiction Harms the Body

Let’s look at the harmful effects addiction can have on the body. The damage caused by addiction can show up in many ways, including:

  • Pancreatitis
  • Reduced bone density
  • Gastrointestinal complications
  • Liver damage
  • Oral cancers
  • Hypertension
  • Cardiomyopathy
  • Strokes
  • Muscle decay

Alcohol abuse can, among many other things, inhibit your ability to form new memories or learn. If you start an outpatient program for addiction, depending on your schedule, your treatment facility might provide lunch, but aside from that, you will be responsible for your own meals. Understanding the impact of nutrition on addiction recovery can give you the knowledge you need to make the right choices when it comes to the food you eat and what you drink during treatment.

Impact of Nutrition on Addiction Recovery

With the right nutrients, you can reverse and inhibit much of this damage during treatment. Nutrition and addiction treatment can increase your chances of:

  • Feeling better physically
  • Being stronger
  • Having better focus and clarity
  • Boosting mood during treatment
  • Feeling better mentally
  • Improving immune function and reducing sickness
  • Increasing chances of completing treatment 

For example, studies have found that many of our serotonin receptors are located in our gut, which means the things we eat can directly influence levels of depression

Nutrition and Addiction Treatment: How It Works

The impact of nutrition on addiction recovery cannot be overstated. Nutrition can help provide the right level of energy, keep you hydrated, and provide the micro and macronutrients your body needs to improve itself physically and mentally.

Choosing to participate in an outpatient program can give you the treatment you need to start a new life. However, it’s important that clients understand the relationship between nutrition and addiction treatment so that they can make the most out of the meals they prepare at home and the ways in which they care for themselves and their bodies during recovery.

At Peninsula Health Center, we want our clients to be as strong and focused as possible during their sessions, and that is why we emphasize the importance of getting the right energy balance through your food. You need to eat strategically throughout the day at regular intervals, not skipping meals, and you need to make sure that what you eat is rich in naturally occurring macro and micronutrients.

To do this, you should focus on:

  • Eating a handful of fruit or nuts when you need an energy boost
  • Avoiding heavily processed foods with high levels of hydrogenated fat, food coloring, sugar, or starch
  • Replacing packaged snack foods with fresh fruit or vegetables and hummus or replacing chicken nuggets, pastries, or instant noodles with freshly baked bread, lean protein, and whole grains
  • Increasing levels of spinach, lettuce, strawberries, salmon, or cauliflower to fight inflammation and depression 
  • Adding probiotic-rich foods like plain yogurt or plain oatmeal with berries to your breakfast
  • Including a range of colors in the fruits and vegetables you consume
  • Eating lean poultry and seafood more often than red meat
  • Avoiding fruit or vegetable juice or smoothies and instead eating fresh and raw fruits and vegetables

Overall, each of these steps can directly impact your mood, the amount of inflammation in your body, how healthy your immune system is, your physical strength, your mood, your ability to focus during a therapy session, your ability to commit information like coping skills to memory, and much more. With the right levels of nutrition and addiction treatment, you can improve your focus, your mood, and your overall success. At Peninsula Health Center, we are here to help you understand and implement the right nutritional changes during treatment. Our holistic drug rehab in California offers a range of programs and therapies to help you on your journey to recovery.Reach out to the team at our Palos Verdes drug rehab today to learn more about boosting your addiction treatment with the right nutrition.