People that have a substance abuse disorder do a real number on their health. Instead of taking care of their basic needs, many individuals that abuse alcohol and drugs will stop sleeping, stop using personal hygiene, stop drinking water, and stop eating in lieu of getting high. This can get somebody’s body all out of whack and with cessation of mind-altering substances comes a necessary recovery period for all systems of the human body to regain a healthy status once again.
One of the best ways to help the body get back to a normal condition is through healthy foods. Food is meant to heal the body with the right moderation along with the right type of nourishment. When someone is in recovery for addiction, they will most likely be malnourished in some capacity due to the drugs and alcohol being the most important factor in their life, Food takes second place and often makes someone that is struggling with an addiction become emaciated from the lack of vitamins and minerals they need to sustain a normal body weight.
One hospital has started trying to make a difference in their patient’s diets by providing cooking classes on their hospital campus to show how important diet is in the recovery process for all patients including those with substance abuse. The Grayken Center for Addiction at Boston Medical Center for years has provided cooking classes that have been customized for specific medical conditions such as heart disease and diabetes. In January, dietician and Head Chef of the Teaching Kitchen, Tracy Burg, added cooking classes that catered to persons that have battled drug and alcohol addiction as well.
Burg’s direction is to help teach those who are in addiction recovery with finding the best practices for ongoing nutrition that can help keep them on the right track. Her vision is to “rebuild after potential cognitive loss, mitigate nutrition deficiencies, and deal with weight loss related to substance use disorders.” Her plan of action includes adding “amino acids, or proteins, to serve as the building blocks for neurotransmitters in the brain, which are often lacking in those with substance use disorders.” Burg says, “Eating foods rich in protein such as meat, dairy, soy, and eggs can contribute to improved brain health.”
The purpose of the cooking class is to give somebody that has not been able to take care of themselves during addiction the skills that they need to be motivated to eat healthier for their recovery. Receiving demonstrations that patients can participate in and learning new recipes can help them to heal in the most valuable way.
If you or someone you know is struggling with drugs and alcohol, Serenity Oaks Wellness Center can be instrumental in promoting healthy life skills that can aid in long-term sobriety. Our 12-Step aspects and holistic therapy can show you how to adorn your soul in recovery.
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