Recovery From Substance Abuse And Nutrition
September is National Recovery month and nutrition can play an important role in the healing process. Recovery from substance abuse use affects the body in many ways including metabolism, organ function and mental well-being. From a nutritional standpoint different drugs can play havoc on your nutritional health in different ways.
- Opiates – affects the gastrointestinal system and can cause problems with constipation, diarrhea, nausea and vomiting which can lead to a lack of nutrients and an imbalance of electrolytes.
- Alcohol – can damage the liver and pancreas the two major organs involved in metabolism and nutrition. The most common deficiencies are vitamin B1, B6, and folic acid. Complications from alcohol use includes diabetes, hypertension, liver damage, seizures, and severe malnutrition.
- Stimulants – reduces appetite and leads to weight loss and poor nutrition. Stimulant use can lead to dehydration and electrolyte imbalances during times of use.
- Marijuana – can increase appetite. Some long-time users may be overweight and need to cut back on sugars, fat, and total calories.
It is important to have a healthy diet in recovery efforts. Balanced nutrition helps improve mood and health and when a person feels better they are less likely to relapse. Some guidelines that might be helpful for nutritional success include;
- Stick to regular meal times
- Eat foods that are low in fat
- Get more protein, complex carbohydrates and dietary fiber
- Vitamin and mineral supplements might be helpful during recovery and may include B-complex, Zinc and Vitamin A and C.
It is also important to stay hydrated and to get enough fluids. It is important to eat healthy meals and snacks and to avoid calorie foods with low nutrition.
Please enjoy the recipe below on your way to healthy but delicious meals.
Lemon Rosemary Salmon
- 1 lemon, thinly sliced
- 4 sprigs fresh rosemary
- 2 salmon fillets, bones and skin removed
- Coarse salt to taste
- 1 Tablespoon of olive oil as needed
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees (F)
- Arrange half the lemon slices in a single layer in a baking dish. Layer 2 sprigs Rosemary, and top with salmon fillets. Sprinkle salmon with salt, layer with remaining rosemary sprigs, and top with remaining lemon. Drizzle with olive oil.
- Bake 20 minutes in preheated oven or until fish easily flaked with fork.