Nutrition For Addiction Recovery

Nutrition For Addiction Recovery

Proper diet and exercise can directly affect your mental and physical health. According to the India National Health Portal (NHP), "Physical activity is an important and essential aspect of our life to achieve optimum health and well-being." Age, gender, and the severity of symptoms impact how much exercise and the type of diet a person needs to stay healthy during recovery. Samarpan prioritizes nutritional meals and physical activity to help clients improve their general health while undergoing treatment.

Diet and Exercise Enhances the Effectiveness of Treatment

Holistic treatment for substance misuse and mental health disorders looks at the person as a whole. Clients are encouraged to remain physically active and eat regular nutritional meals. The brain and body benefit from a healthy lifestyle that includes the following:

  • Quality sleep
  • Staying hydrated
  • Physical activity
  • Healthy diet
  • Positive social interactions

Diet can significantly impact mood stability and a client's ability to focus on recovery. According to The BMJ, "[I]mproving diet may help to protect not only the physical health but also the mental health of the population." Individuals in treatment may have nutritional deficiencies or poor physical health due to the side effects of their condition. The personalized treatment programs at Samarpan ensure clients have access to the resources they need to establish healthy routines.

Diet and Exercise at Samarpan

Martin Peters, the Director of Residential Services at Samarpan, has said, "For clients who may have specific dietary needs, we will ensure that these are also managed either with a nutritionist or a dietician so that they can rebuild their physical health as well as mental. We also know that both diet and exercise can play a significant role in improving mental health, so all of our interventions from group exercise to eating as a community is a part of getting clients to reconnect with themselves, and others."

Clients can rely on their care team to help them identify areas they can improve in their diet and physical health. We provide professional support and education that helps clients meet the health recommendations for their age and gender. In addition, Samarpan continues to monitor physical and emotional wellness, adjusting activities and meals as necessary to meet health goals.

Biological, Social, and Psychological Wellness

Diet and exercise are directly linked to biological, social, and physical wellness. The food clients eat can affect chemicals in the brain that impact thought and behaviour patterns. In addition, regular physical activity can increase focus and improve cognition. Clients should have access to treatment services that protect their well-being by providing guidance on improving their overall health.

Impact of Spiritual Wellness

Diet and Exercise affect a client's ability to establish and maintain spiritual wellness. According to the Indian Journal of Psychiatry, "Mental health has two dimensions—absence of mental illness and presence of a well-adjusted personality that contributes effectively to the life of the community." The researchers reported, "Recent studies show that religious beliefs and practices are supportive to cope with stresses in life and are beneficial to mental health." Clients who feel more engaged, energized, and focused will have a more meaningful spiritual experience.

Religion or spirituality can provide clients with a supportive community of like-minded individuals who can become part of their support system. In addition, spirituality can help clients feel hopeful and motivated throughout treatment and recovery.

The Health Benefits of Regular Exercise

Regular exercise ensures people feel their best and provides the following benefits:

  • Reduced risk of heart disease and cancer 
  • Improved circulation
  • Boosted immune system
  • Less severe mental health symptoms
  • Mood stabilization
  • Greater mental focus

Most people also find it easier to form social connections while engaging in group physical activities. Regular exercise can include walking, sports, gym routines, and other low-stress activities. Clients often benefit from having exercise activities built into their treatment plans. The structure and accountability make it easier to establish new routines.

Nutritional Meals Can Impact Mental Health

Nutrition plays a key role in mental health because it can physically affect cognition and emotions. According to Harvard Medical School, "[W]hat you eat directly affects the structure and function of your brain and, ultimately, your mood." The brain requires certain nutrients to work correctly, and without them, people may begin to notice disruptive symptoms, including:

  • Difficulty focusing
  • Muscle aches and pains
  • Headaches or migraines
  • Unusual tiredness or hyperactivity
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Changes to appetite
  • Significant mood swings

Certain foods and ingredients can impact your recovery by affecting your physical and mental health. Harvard Medical School goes on to report that "Multiple studies have found a correlation between a diet high in refined sugars and impaired brain function — and even a worsening of symptoms of mood disorders, such as depression." The care team at Samarpan educates clients on how to identify and prepare meals that promote positive mental health.

Healthy Diet and Exercise Can Improve Peer Engagement

A healthy diet during treatment involves eating regular nutritional meals with peers, support staff, and the clinical team. The relationships and boundaries formed between peers at the meal table can mimic family dynamics and prepare clients for continuing care. In addition, peers provide each other with accountability and encouragement during the early stages of recovery. Communal meals can normalize a healthy diet, positive social interactions, and improve self-care. Samarpan uses mealtime as an opportunity to practice the many skills and coping techniques clients learn during therapy.

Physical and mental health is directly connected to diet, exercise, and self-care. If clients do not look after their overall health, the treatment will not have the same degree of impact. Samarpan encourages clients to exercise, eat healthily, and prioritize positive social interactions. We believe that to maintain long-term recovery, clients need to create sustainable healthy routines that support their overall well-being. We provide nutrition counselling, skill development, and other services to help clients learn how to manage their physical and mental health during and after treatment. We also educate families about the importance of diet, exercise, and social support. To learn more about our programs and how we can help, call us today at +91 81809 19090.

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