When people become addicted to drugs, it can really take a toll on the body. A big part of recovering from addiction is to make sure to eat healthy foods that will naturally boost the presence of chemicals that the brain may be lacking in. There are certain nutrients that can actually help reduce the effects of drug withdrawal. If a person is malnourished, they will find it much harder to get off of drugs. The other issue is that many drug addictions reduce people’s appetites, making it harder to eat healthily.
Whether it’s you or somebody you know that has struggled with addiction to drugs, it is important to get the necessary help in order to live a fulfilling and healthy lifestyle. Consciously making good dietary choices is a great exercise of the will and it is an important step to forming healthy habits. The following list contains some foods that will really help anyone who has been struggling with drug addiction. It is important to remember that these foods are not meant to cure addictions, but they can definitely be helpful aids on the road to recovery.
There are a lot of ways to get protein, such as by increasing the intake of ancient grains and staples like tofu. Meat and poultry are highly concentrated in protein, but their consumption should be limited because of their high saturated fat content. Vegan options like seitan and lentils can be a godsend because of their high protein content and lack of saturated fats. High levels of protein are needed for the body to produce tyrosine, a precursor to dopamine and norepinephrine, which are both neurotransmitters that make you sharper and more alert.
Soy, Nuts, and Beans
Not only do these foods provide a lot of protein, but eating them also increases the production of tryptophan, a precursor to the important neurotransmitter serotonin. Serotonin helps to regulate moods. A lack of serotonin can make it harder to manage stress, depression, and anxiety. Addicts and those recovering from drug addiction almost always have a lack of serotonin, making it harder to quit or to deal with withdrawal symptoms. Nuts, beans, and soy are rich in amino acids, and thus can really help normalize neurotransmitters that have fallen out of balance.
The brain utilizes glucose as its preferred source of energy. When a person is recovering from the impact drugs have taken on the body, the brain needs even more energy than usual in order to heal. Carbohydrates come in a lot of forms, such as whole wheat and other grains. Starchy vegetables, lentils, and beans can all give a healthy and balanced boost of carbohydrates. Green vegetables have all kinds of nutritional benefits and are also a good source of carbohydrates. A person should always give their brain the energy it needs, especially when it comes to recovery.
Avoid Overconsumption of Saturated Fat
Too many saturated fats can lead to vascular disease. The heart is an important muscle that transports necessary nutrients to your brain. An unhealthy heart leads to an unhealthy brain. The better kinds of fats are omega-3 fatty acids, which help increase the fluidity of the transmission of nerve signals and improve neurotransmitter reception in the brain. Saturated fats have the opposite effect. A good option is to use vegetable substitutes for your favorite fat-filled foods. For example, instead of regular mayonnaise, which is very fatty, try a vegetable-based substitute like Just Mayo by Hampton Creek.
Eat Lots of Fruits and Vegetables
When the body is in repair mode, the inflammatory response system can be triggered. The inflammation you naturally experience as a result of harm to the body is meant to accelerate repair and fight infection, however, when it goes too far, inflammation can be harmful, and may actually be a cause of injury and diseases. Fruits and vegetables are packed with phytonutrients that help balance inflammation. Avocados are an amazing fruit that are filled with omega-3 fatty acids that help to fight inflammation and also to strengthen nerve connections in the brain.
Healthy Habits for a Healthy Body
When you eat the best kinds of foods, you’ll feel great. This is a rule that applies to anybody, including those who have battled with drug addictions. Being conscious of your diet and resisting the craving for sweet and unhealthy processed foods is not only a healthier way to live, but it is part of a pattern of behavior to resist addiction. Remember that you are what you eat, so eating fresh and healthy foods helps you be the best person you can be.