Drug recovery takes everything your body can give. Drug addiction makes it hard to get all the nutrients your body needs. Decreased appetite, rapid metabolism, and impaired organ function compound the problem. Then, the detox process further depletes your body’s nutrient stores as it tries to rapidly minimize and repair damage while purging toxins in an attempt to normalize itself.
This makes proper nourishment for your body essential to the drug recovery process. To build your nutrient reserves back up, you need to eat more of the right foods- but that’s something you probably already know. Beyond nutrition, there are still dozens of ways to nourish and help your body heal during drug recovery. Better, by focusing on your health, you will feel better faster.
Stock Up on Key Nutrients
Getting the nutrients you need is vital. You’ve probably heard this time and again. Eat whole vegetable, fruits, and grains. Focus on getting the nutritional value while your body heals. Don’t cut out any food groups. Recovery is never the time to go on a diet; you don’t want to risk accidentally depriving your body of something it needs.
Eat food as close to its natural state as possible. Eat food as soon after it’s picked as it can to maximize the nutrients you can absorb, and only buy products you’ll eat. Buying a bag of kale and forcing yourself to eat it two weeks later is a lot less useful than buying and eating a few bags of equally nutritious (and far less bitter) spinach.
Don’t Forget Your Amino Acids
A lot of people will overlook amino acids when they’re talking about getting their nutrients. You don’t just need vitamins and minerals. Amino acids are what can jump-start the healing process.
Yes, you need all three, but amino acids are what help you make new cells to replace damaged ones, enables you to create antibodies, and repairs damage. They are also crucial to building specific enzymes that will help you make the most of your vitamin and mineral rich foods. Aminos are primarily found in animal proteins, dairy, legumes, nuts, seeds, and whole grains. They are also found in fruits and veg, but in much smaller quantities and less variety.
Embrace “Heat Shocks”
Treatments like this have long been thought to help nourish the body by pushing out toxins and, in the case of hot springs, allowing your skin to absorb minerals from the bath. Now, however, the evidence is pointing to heat shocks as a way to force your body to create specific enzymes that speed healing and reduce overall fatigue.
Try A Nature Bath
If you find your life getting too stressful, getting outside can help. “Nature bath” is a term used to describe being in nature and letting your body have a time out from all the simulations and stresses of the modern world. A little sun exposure will help with vitamin D production, and the even a brief walk through nature can help you clear your head.
You don’t have to go on a hike or go camping. Even just finding a quiet, wooded spot to sit for a while can decrease overall stress and frustration. If you can’t get outside for a fully immersive experience, a few houseplants may be able to mimic these effects. Stress reduction leads to a more nourished body as high-stress levels can prevent critical processes, such as nutrient absorption, enzyme production, and can increase levels of inflammation.
Expand Your Cooking Repertoire
It’s a lot easier to eat better when you know how to make healthy food taste good to you. Having healthy food on hand doesn’t help if you don’t eat it, and if it doesn’t taste good, it’s unlikely that you’ll keep the habit up long-term. Taking a cooking class or using the internet to enhance your skills can also be a positive distraction.
Don’t Stress – Make Things Easy
In addition to cooking better food and making sure to optimize your nutrient intake, you should make things easier on yourself. We all have bad days. During recovery, those bad days might outnumber the “okay” days. Food prep can help.
If you prepare nourishing food ahead of time, you’re more likely to eat well on the bad days. By keeping on top of your nutrition regimen, you’ll move one step closer to another good day.
Do Your Research – Don’t Rely on Trends
The recovery process has its lows, and as prepared as you think you are for them, sometimes it’s not enough. You need to do something different, you want relief, and you’ll jump at the first thing that’s offered to you because you need help now. Right now. And sometimes that works out but more often than not, snap decisions lead to abysmal outcomes.
So before you hit worst-case-scenario or you get to the point that you just can’t anymore, have solutions in place. Do your research now. Find the right evidence-based treatment for addiction recovery. Find a support person or group. Make plans for how you’ll cope. Make reminders. Whatever you have to do, make your preparations. It might seem like a pain now, and it will take time, but your future self will thank you.