Nutrition And Exercise
Addiction can have significant effects on your physical health. Most substances negatively affect the body in some way, with users experiencing anything between headaches and nausea to cardiac arrest and respiratory failure.
For some people, it’s not the substance itself that has the worst physical impact, it’s the method of ingestion. Smoking marijuana or crack cocaine, for instance, can put strain on the respiratory system, and using drugs intravenously can lead to collapsed veins.
In addition, regardless of the substance, the mere existence of an addiction problem can result in lifestyle choices that are detrimental to physical health. As the user becomes increasingly dependent on their substance of choice, fueling the addiction becomes more important than fueling the body.
Addiction can also lead the individual down a path of not sleeping enough, failing to seek medical treatment for illnesses and injuries, and engaging in potentially high-risk behaviour that can deplete the body.
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The Role Of Nutrition And Exercise In Addiction Treatment
With your body having taken some punishment during your phase of active addiction, it is important to work on regaining your physical strength. There are several reasons why this is important:
- By taking care of your health, you can repair some damage and start to reverse long-term effects of substance use
- By embarking on a healthy exercise routine paired with healthy nutrition, you can train your body to produce dopamine in natural, healthy ways, which in turn can help you manage cravings
- If you take care of your body, you are better able to focus on your addiction recovery
- By learning and following healthy habits, you can build up your immune system, which will make you less susceptible to illness and infection
- The healthy exercise and nutrition habits that you develop can stand you in good stead for the rest of your life
- Developing these good habits can boost your confidence and self-esteem, and give you tangible goals to aim for
Nutrition As Part Of Addiction Rehab
With many things in life it can be said that you get out what you put in. If you follow a healthy nutrition plan that is balanced and sustainable – meaning that it is easy for you to stick to on an ongoing basis – your energy levels increase. Hence, you are able to manage depression and anxiety better. Also, you get less sick less frequently, and you have a better ability to focus.
We support our clients’ nutritional needs in several ways, including the following:
- Balanced meals are prepared by trained chefs, who take into account those who follow vegetarian or vegan diets, those with food allergies, and those who cannot eat certain foods for medical, religious or cultural reasons
- By providing information and education, we give you the tools you will need to continue a healthy program once your time in rehab is done.
- We encourage adequate hydration, especially during the detox phase when the substances are working their way out of your system
- We adjust and adapt your nutrition throughout your time in our facility, to cater to the changes going on in your body as you heal.
Everybody is different and has different needs, particularly in a rehab setting that is focused on healing and wellness. Nutrition counseling gives us the opportunity to talk to you one-on-one to discuss various factors relating to your specific nutritional needs, such as:
- The substance you were using, how long you used it for, and the amount of use per day
- Your age and weight
- Any medical conditions that existed prior to or during the addiction
- Your level of current and desired physical activity
- Whether you have any allergies, conditions or religious constraints
Your nutritionist will use this information to devise a custom nutrition plan. Although, this may be adjusted as you progress through rehab. We do this to allow for the fact that as your body gets stronger, your nutritional needs may change.
Good nutrition does not come to an end when you leave rehab. Your nutritionist will ensure that when it is time for you to go home, you will be equipped with the knowledge to continue a healthy eating plan.
Exercise As Part Of Addiction Rehab
Nutrition and exercise go hand-in-hand. Either one of these elements by itself can go a long way to helping you during your addiction rehab, but both together can make the biggest impact.
At our facility, we provide many opportunities for you to get and stay active. Exercise is not merely a recreational option – although this element is important as well – it will be an integral part of your addiction treatment program.
Just as everyone has different nutritional needs, all of our clients have unique needs and abilities when it comes to physical exercise. We incorporate exercise in our rehab programs based on factors such as:
- Your age, weight, and existing level of physical fitness and activity
- Any medical conditions, injuries or mobility constraints
- Exercise programs that you have undertaken in the past, whether successfully or not
- Your personal preferences with regard to exercise
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Exercise Will Only Work If It Is Enjoyable
We believe that there is a form of exercise for everyone. Moving your body should not feel like a punishment, or something you are obligated to do in order to check off a box on a to do list. It should be something you seek out and enjoy, something that you can get excited about.
If you do not know which forms of exercise are best suited to your capabilities and preferences, we will help you discover what is right for you.
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To find out more about our exercise and nutrition programs and how they form part of our holistic addiction treatment and rehab programs, give us a call today. We look forward to helping you or your loved one through a challenging but highly rewarding addiction rehab process.