Healing With Food: Best Recipes to Prepare After Addiction
According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 19.7 million American adults battled substance abuse disorder in 2017 and it continues to grow today. When you are on the road to recovery, you need to put healthy aspects into all areas of your life. Treatment and recovery programs often fail to address how proper nutrition is essential to your journey. Eating nourishingly and taking care of your body allows you to nourish yourself and return to a healthy lifestyle.
A meal plan for addiction recovery is essential since certain foods can assist you. When you prepare a recovery diet, you are healing with food. Here are the best foods for alcohol recovery, along with other substances.
What is Addiction?
Addiction knows no age or cultural boundaries. It does not care if you are rich or poor and does not discriminate. Addiction is a disease that alters the brain through small changes over time.
The brain’s frontal cortex is responsible for decision-making and judgment, which drug abuse affects. The initial decision to use drugs is voluntary but becomes a disease as it compels a person to continue using despite the negative consequences.
How Substance Use Disorder Affects Nutrition
Addiction dramatically alters a person’s eating habits because it influences the nutrition available to the body. Some drugs suppress appetite while others increase it. Since the decision-making areas of your brain are constantly being damaged, it causes you to skip out on meals altogether or make poor diet choices like processed and fast foods.
When you follow a recovery diet, you can gradually repair the effects of substance abuse. Certain types of substance abuse can cause different nutritional deficiencies. Some examples are:
- Alcohol: If you struggle with alcoholism, it can damage the liver and cause digestive and cognitive impairments. You can address nutritional deficiencies like vitamin B6, B1, A, B12 and folic acid with the best foods for alcohol recovery.
- Stimulants: This can cause users to go days without sleep and food. It suppresses appetite and can cause malnutrition, dehydration and electrolyte depletion.
- Opiates: Substances like heroin and morphine can cause constipation and gastrointestinal disorders.
Staple Foods For Your Diet
Certain superfoods are great to include in your diet. These can be ingredients you always have stocked, even when you’re unsure what to make. Here are some of the best foods for alcohol recovery and other substances.
This fish is loaded with omega-3 fatty acids, which help your cardiovascular health and promote a healthy brain. One of the amino acids in salmon is called tyrosine, which aids in dopamine production.
Dopamine is the hormone responsible for feeling happy and is linked with pleasurable sensations, alertness and mood. Salmon is a high-protein superfood to help restore your body’s dopamine gradually.
Bananas are packed with fiber and antioxidants to help digestion and replenish your body. They can also have mood-enhancing benefits since the tryptophan content is essential for the formation of serotonin.
Serotonin plays a role in managing moods, emotions, appetite and digestion. It also affects melatonin, which balances your body’s circadian rhythm. Not only are bananas a sweet treat to indulge in, but they are perfect for digestion and help you feel full longer.
Leafy greens such as kale, lettuce, spinach and broccoli help fight inflammation and provide you with antioxidants. Vegetables are always an excellent source for detoxification and improving the health of your liver. Eat them as a side with your meals to ensure you get all the benefits they give you.
Best Recipes to Prepare After Addiction
Having a meal plan for addiction recovery is essential to nourish your body. A recovery diet helps you with a plan of action to reduce cravings and symptoms. Here are some of the most delicious recipes to prepare after addiction.
Blueberry Banana Pancakes
Blueberry banana pancakes are a great breakfast option if you want to keep bananas in your diet but switch up how you eat them. All you need for this recipe is to mix greek yogurt with ¼ of your banana, egg whites and vanilla extract in a bowl. In a different bowl, combine flour with baking soda, sugar and salt. Whisk together evenly and add blueberries.
Place ¼ cup of the batter onto a nonstick pan and cook until bubbles appear through the top. Flip each pancake while cooking on each side for one to two minutes. You can make a blueberry sauce with the remaining banana and blueberries by mashing them in a saucepan and stirring for five to seven minutes until thick.
Fettuccine with Pepper Cayenne Sauce
This is a great recipe since it combats cravings with lots of carbohydrates to create a sense of calmness. You’ll want to bring water to a boil and add the pasta for eight to 10 minutes. Spray a large pan and saute bell peppers of your choice, garlic and cayenne pepper on medium heat. Stir in sour cream and broth while simmering uncovered for five minutes. Remove from heat and stir in your cheese.
Once everything is prepared, you can throw in your hot pasta and season how you would like. Your delicious pasta creation is now ready to eat.
Chocolate-Orange Energy Balls
Snacks are great to have during recovery and nutritious ones can help you regulate under and over-eating problems you may have faced before. Here is how to make this energizing snack.
Take pitted Medjool dates, pecan nuts, pumpkin seeds, rolled oats, cacao powder, almond butter and orange into a food processor with orange juice. Blitz until the combination is chopped and starts to clump.
Then, roll the mixture into balls with your hands. You can add more orange juice and oil to your hands if it is too dry. Once you’re done, your snacks are ready to enjoy and you can keep them in the fridge for up to two weeks.
Creating a Meal Plan for Addiction Recovery
Recovering is a process — so is learning how to eat nutritious foods. Taking the time to eat things that benefit you is essential to cherishing your body and what it does for you. Try out these recipes to make recovery taste great.
Beth is the Managing Editor and content manager at Body+Mind. She shares knowledge on a variety of topics related to nutrition, healthy living, and anything food-related. In her spare time, Beth enjoys trying out new fitness trends and recipes.