You’ve heard the phrase “garbage in, garbage out” right? This adage is certainly true regarding the food we use to sustain better health. After all, there’s a big difference between a whole foods diet and “food” that might fill our bellies but does nothing to optimize physical, emotional, and mental well-being.
Reset Your System With Proper Fuel
For a person in recovery, choosing the right nutrition is an essential but often overlooked aspect of self-care and treatment. The proper balance of minerals, vitamins, and other nutrients is the internal stabilizer that promotes happiness, confidence, and clear thinking. While certain physical health conditions can’t be completely cured by eating a whole-foods diet, many medical professionals strongly advocate for using it to make significant changes.
For example, Mark Hyman, a noted functional wellness physician, stated this on his Facebook page: “How much you eat matters, but the quality of the food we put into our bodies matters more because it drives our gene function, metabolism, and health,” he said. “Rather than subscribing to the antiquated calories in/calories out model for weight loss and good health, focus on powerful, gene-altering, whole, real, fresh food that you cook yourself can rapidly change your biology.”
Whole, real, fresh food. That’s it. That’s the fuel that helps our systems run more effectively, improve immunity, and enhance mood.
In his video “Is whole foods just a hippie hoax?” Hyman shares some important notes:
- Processed foods use the raw materials of industrial agriculture—such as corn, wheat, and soy—broken down into cheap compounds made with dyes, additional salt, and sugar.
- The average American’s diet contains 50–60 percent processed food.
- For every 10 percent of your diet that is processed food, the risk of death increases by nearly 15 percent.
So simply think back to the last time you had soda, chips, frozen pizza, shelf-stable lunchmeat, instant ramen, margarine, and other processed goods. While your taste buds and even your brain love this type of “food” (and it’s been manufactured to produce exactly that reaction!) and it fills your belly, it’s still not fuel. And you continued to feel poorly the more you indulged in these choices.
We Support Balanced Nutrition
At Twin Lakes, we’re strong supporters of using balanced nutrition to enable better, long-lasting recovery. Here are just a few articles we’ve written to provide you with not only information about the benefits of a whole-foods diet, but also essential tips to adapt:
- Nutrition and Addiction
- Foods That Help Curb Drug and Alcohol Cravings
- 5 Foods Your Body Needs During Recovery
- Changing an Acid Diet to Alkaline
Sometimes, the list of dos and don’ts of recovery can seem like a lot. Fortunately, gradually changing to more of a whole-foods eating plan is simple.
A Whole-Foods Diet in Easy, Small Steps
Whether you’re just starting a recovery journey or finding new ways to enhance your sobriety, gradually making small adjustments to your eating plan makes it convenient and even entertaining to adapt. Here are some methods that demonstrate how little changes involving a more whole-foods approach eventually make a big difference.
- Add a fresh salad to every dinner. Raw, colorful vegetables seasoned with spices, oil and vinegar, or maybe two tablespoons of a low-fat salad dressing provide a quick change you can make today. Raw vegetables are high in fiber and essential nutrients. Here are some recipes to try.
- Stop drinking soda and other sugary drinks (including shelved juices). Sugar addiction is a real concern, especially since the toxic white stuff is added to just about everything. While you might have a headache and feel a bit lethargic the first couple of days, you’ll experience numerous benefits later.
- Eliminate the junk. Garbage in, garbage out, remember? But changing your mindset about what “treats” are and gradually weaning yourself off all the tasty options takes time. Here’s how to do it.
- Start your day with a healthy breakfast. Of course bacon is delicious. The smell of it cooking drives us wild. But as one of the most highly-processed foods, it’s not the most ideal way to fuel your body for a day of activity. The right balance of proteins and carbohydrates helps you power through until lunch (which will also be healthy!) These alternative breakfast ideas show you how tasty your first meal of the day can be!
- Drive past the drive thru. You already know this. You really do. But sometimes there’s so much going on that you simply want something quick and easy that doesn’t require much preparation. Try this healthy fast food guide to learn how to make better choices.
Other Wellness Solutions You’ll Learn at Twin Lakes
Many people have the misconception that addiction treatment is only about enduring suffering. While there certainly might be challenges revealed during early recovery, there are also bright opportunities to continue to uncover your true self.
At Twin Lakes Recovery Center, we want to educate, encourage, and empower each resident’s movement into a drug and alcohol-free life. We offer solutions focused on whole-person health to make this happen. So an individual fueled by proper nutrition can use this internal motivation to enjoy other meaningful aspects of life, build better relationships, take pride in accomplishments, and prevent relapse.
Take a moment to learn more about our philosophy and individualized treatment approach.