Nutritional Changes to Support Recovery

Content medically reviewed by Vicky Magobet, PMHNP-BC, on July 22, 2019.

Eating a well-balanced diet is seldom mentioned when people talk about addiction recovery. This diet change along with adequate sleep and exercise will increase the "feel good" hormones your body produces, making for a quick and successful recovery. Since addiction can alter a person's diet, proper nutrition and some dietary changes are required for anyone recovering from an addiction. Some of these changes follow.

1. Ensure Nutritional Balance

Your body needs a sufficient supply of nutrients for you to remain healthy and strong. Nutrients are divided into two basic categories:

  • Macronutrients: Carbohydrates, fats, protein, fiber and water
  • Micronutrients: Vitamins and minerals

You need to ensure that you’re receiving an adequate supply of the following nutrients from healthy sources:

  • Vitamins and minerals: Fruits, vegetables, dairy, nuts, seeds, beans and whole grain cereals and bread
  • Carbohydrates: Whole fruits, vegetables, potatoes, beans, nuts, low-fat dairy, whole grain cereals and bread
  • Protein: Beans, low-fat dairy, eggs, nuts, fish and chicken
  • Fats: Nuts, seeds, fish oil and dairy
  • Fiber: Carrots, apples, oatmeal, beans, tomatoes, nuts, whole wheat bread, brown rice, green vegetables and cabbage

2. Stick to a Recommended Diet Plan

To ensure that your brain receives enough nutrients to work properly, your treatment program dietitian will recommend a healthy meal plan. The meal plan will vary depending on the type of substance abuse you’re recovering from. For instance, if you’re not eating adequately and you’re underweight, you’ll need to eat food that is rich in healthy carbohydrates and fats so that you can gradually receive enough calories.

3. Prepare Healthy Meals

When you’re in the recovery stage, you need to start preparing your own meals. Preparing healthy meals is a great habit that will help your mind stay focused and keep you energized.

4. Avoid Binge Eating

Many clients gain weight during detox. One of the reasons is that as drugs leave the blood and tissues, the appetite tends to increase. You need to keep track of your weight to stay healthy. In addition, avoid eating fast food as a means for satisfying your cravings.

Eat food that has adequate dietary fiber, including vegetables and whole fruit. This lifestyle will keep you full longer and prevent binge eating. Also, stay hydrated and try to carry a water bottle with you when you go outdoors. Remember that dehydration can lead to confusion, irritability and dizziness. It also hinders a person's ability to exercise self-control.

5. Receive Nutrition Therapy

If you’re at a detox or addiction treatment facility like Diamond House Detox, you'll need to adopt some nutrition changes for addiction recovery. A dietitian will provide you with a structured meal plan, and you'll be served three main meals: breakfast, lunch and dinner. You’ll also have snacks — one between breakfast and lunch, one between lunch and dinner and one late night snack.

After you leave the facility, you must continue to follow our dietitian’s recommendations. Eat fruit and vegetables with each meal, and follow your meal plan as closely as possible to hasten the process of recovery.

Contact Us Today to Get Started With Proper Nutrition and Treatment

If you need more information about nutritional changes for addiction recovery, contact us at Diamond House Detox today. We run a certified rehab and addiction recovery facility with a team of medical practitioners, including doctors and nurses who provide incidental medical services. Any client who needs injectable medicine can receive it on-site at our facility. Reach out now to get started.

Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner at Diamond House Detox
Vicky is a board certified Family Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner, certified by the American Nurses Credentialing Center. She began her nursing career in healthcare by working in the intensive care unit, and then an inpatient psychiatric hospital. After realizing the mental health needs of both the patients and the families she served, she became a Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner. Throughout her experience working with clients, she has developed a passion for those with dual diagnoses and specializes in helping individuals recognize the issues driving their substance use. This recognition has been crucial to the individual’s success in treatment. Vicky opened Diamond House Detox so that she can address these issues early on in a therapeutic environment to allow clients to transition to the next level in their recovery.
Vicky Magobet