Drug and alcohol addiction is a costly disease that can not only have negative consequences on your life from a legal perspective — as a DUI lawyer knows all too well — but the physical trauma these addictions leave on your body can be devastating..
If you or your loved one has already started down the road to recovery from addiction, one aspect you may not have considered is the importance of proper nutrition. It may be easy to see the terrible toll that the addiction has taken to your life and relationships, but it harder to see the physical damage that comes along with addiction to your body. Regaining your physical health through nutrition is a great way to create a foundation to continue recovery. Nutritional counselors are skilled and experienced at creating a plan for you to help take back your life and live a healthy lifestyle.
Addiction does significant damage to your body.
- It is not uncommon for addiction to cause malnourishment. For someone who has an alcohol addiction, drinking beer, wine, and liquor creates a feeling of being full, which only having empty calories. Because of this, many alcoholics do not eat a healthy diet containing the nutrients that their body needs to properly function. Those addicted to drugs are often so consumed with finding their next fix that they completely forget to eat. By the time an addict enters rehabilitation, malnourishment has already taken a large toll on their health overall.
- Your immune system becomes damaged by addiction. Substance abuse, whether drug or alcohol, causes malnutrition which then leads to the disruption of your body’s natural defenses. When your immune system is compromised, there is an increased risk for getting breast, lung, liver, or colon cancer.
- Your liver becomes damaged through addiction. Your liver’s ability to filter toxins is affected by the combination of heavy drug or alcohol use and your body’s decrease in nutrients. This causes your liver to swell, which increased the chance of getting liver cancer and also causes your appetite to be essentially nonexistent.
- Addiction ruins your self-esteem. There are some obvious physical effects caused by addiction. Some of these include rotting teeth, large amounts of weight loss, bloodshot eyes, scarred skin, and a yellowing complexion. Some of these changes are still visible after you are on the road to recovery, which makes it difficult to build your self-esteem back up.
Nutrition is key to a successful recovery.
Reversing all of the damage caused by addiction may not be possible. However, working with a nutritional counselor to build a plan to make your body stronger, healthier, and attractive is possible. Here are some tips to help kick off your journey with good nutrition:
- Drink decaf coffee, soda, and tea.
- Avoid sugary foods.
- Eat antioxidant-rich foods.
- Eat plenty of fiber and protein.
- Be wise when snacking.
- Really look at what you’re eating
Truly recovering from drug or alcohol addiction involves restoring your body and mind. One of the best ways to help heal your body that has been destroyed by addiction is proper nutrition. Diet and nutrition plays a key part in how you feel, which will help you have a higher chance of a successful recovery. For professional guidance on your nutrition, contact a skilled Chicago IL nutritional counseling residents can turn to so you can receive proper guidance.
Thanks to our friends and contributors from WholeHealth Chicago for their added insight.