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By Ohio Addiction Recovery Center in Columbus, Ohio.

Detoxing from alcohol or drugs can be challenging as your body starts healing from all the damage caused by substance misuse. Therefore, it is essential to eat the right foods good for drug detox that are rich in vitamins and nutrients your body lacks to help the body heal.

What Is Drug Detox?

Drug detox is cleansing the body of the substances you misuse. Each person’s detox experience will differ based on the type of substances used, the amount, and the frequency. Therefore, medically supervised detox is highly recommended as it helps you safely manage your withdrawal symptoms. 

The Importance of Replacing Lost Nutrients

Substance use disorders result in not getting the proper nutrients the body needs to remain healthy. Many misused substances suppress the appetite or trigger cravings for foods high in processed sugars and fats. Additionally, while you were using drugs, you may have:

  • Consumed snack foods, fried foods, fast food, and other foods that are not nutritious.
  • Skipped meals due to appetite suppression from the drugs that were used.
  • Lost nutrients as the body depleted nutrient reserves. 
  • Lost muscle mass and weight.
  • Experienced an increase in diseases and infections.

Food helps provide the body and brain with nutrients that boost the immune system, help recover from injuries, heal damage to tissues and organs, and help regulate sufficient chemical and neurotransmitter levels. 

Most Common Nutritional Deficiencies From Substance Misuse

According to the National Library of Medicine, with a lower intake of nutrients in drug use, there are differences in the majority of vitamins and minerals, including: 

  • Riboflavin
  • Thiamin
  • Pyridoxine
  • Vitamin C
  • Folate
  • Vitamin D
  • Copper
  • Calcium
  • Magnesium
  • Zinc
  • Selenium
  • Vitamin A
  • B Vitamins
  • Vitamin E
  • Iron

Furthermore, nutritional imbalances result from a lack of food or consuming higher levels of empty calories. In addition, the specific nutritional deficiencies are directly related to the substance used. 

For example, people with opiate use disorder often have deficiencies in amino acids, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin D, and Vitamin E. According to a study at Massachusetts General Hospital, Vitamin D deficiency strongly increases the effects and cravings for opioids, along with the risk of developing opioid dependence and addiction. 

What Foods are Good for Drug Detox?

Foods that are good for drug detox include:

  • Water. Most people with substance use disorders are dehydrated. While water has no nutritional value, it does help increase oxygen levels and remove toxins from the body.
  • Fresh Fruits and Vegetables. Both contain essential vitamins, minerals, and nutrients the body needs to help from substance misuse. Try incorporating bell peppers, avocados, tomatoes, berries, beets, and citrus fruits into your diet. 
  • Protein-Rich Foods. Protein helps the body repair damage caused by drug misuse. Healthy proteins you can enjoy include peanuts, pistachios, eggs, fish, soybeans, tofu, lentils, turkey, chicken, and lean meats. 
  • Reduce Processed Foods and Saturated Fats. Processed foods include any food that has been processed in some manner, such as canning, freezing, drying, or baking. You should read nutritional labels and only choose foods that have total fat of 3 grams or less, saturated fats of 1.5 g or less, total sugars of 5 grams or less, and total salt of 3 grams or less. 
  • Whole Grains. Brown rice, oatmeal, popcorn, whole-wheat crackers, bread, and pasta provide fiber and carbohydrates the body needs during drug detox.
  • Green and Leaf Veggies. Beans, lettuce, spinach, peas, asparagus, and spinach are foods with folic acid, Vitamin B-6, and other nutrients your body needs. 
  • Dairy Products. Low-fat dairy products, like cheese, milk, and yogurt, help improve digestion and contain calcium and Vitamin B2. 

Other Healthy Habits to Develop During Detox

Besides establishing a healthy diet with foods beneficial to restore the lost nutrients you need, you may need to take supplements. When first starting the detox, it can be difficult to want to eat, and supplements can provide the nutrients you need until your appetite returns to normal. 

Therefore, you should not force yourself to eat if you feel nauseous or constipated. However, as you start eating regular meals, establish set meal times. You should focus on three healthy meals and two healthy snacks throughout the day. 

Exercise is another healthy habit you should focus on developing. Regular exercise at least three times a week increases the release of endorphins, which can help reduce withdrawal symptoms and cravings. 

Medically Supervised Detox and Detox Nutrition in Columbus, OH

At Ohio Addiction Recovery Center in Columbus, OH, we help you learn more about nutritional therapy and healthy foods good for drug detox based on your individual needs and substance use disorder. During detox, we provide access to nutritional supplements and the nutritious foods you need as your appetite returns.

After completing detox, we offer nutritional counseling, meal planning, and exercise education to assist you further and help your body heal and restore itself. For further information about how foods are good for drug detox and how we can help you with your substance use order, please feel free to contact us.

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