Many patients in drug addiction treatment report that the final thing that showed them that they needed rehab was a health issue or major health problem caused by drug abuse or their actions under the influence. Some of the most common health problems caused by drug addiction include bronchitis, bleeding ulcers, higher risk of certain cancers, seizures, kidney failure, liver failure, hepatitis, nerve problems and more depending upon the type of drug abused.
You can be in any stage of different illnesses when you go through drug rehab – or you could have developed the beginnings of a health problem that has yet to be diagnosed. Though stopping abuse of your drug of choice doesn’t guarantee that the damage will be reversed or even stopped, it’s likely that the progression of the illness will be slowed when you are no longer abusing drugs. This is reason in and of itself to get drug addiction treatment, but even more importantly, every day that you make healthy choices in terms of nutrition and avoid drugs and alcohol, the more improvement you will see in how you feel each day.
Addressing the Nutrition Issues Brought About by Your Drug of Choice
Depending upon your drug of choice, you may have developed specific issues with food and nutrition during your addiction. For example, those who live with marijuana addiction often have an increase in appetite but don’t necessarily eat nutritious foods. Obesity and related illnesses can be a problem as a result. Stimulant drugs like cocaine, crystal meth and certain pills can increase heart rate and blood pressure while also decreasing appetite, causing cardiac issues and a number of problems related to malnutrition. Opiate drugs like heroin and prescription painkillers can interfere with the function of the gastrointestinal system, making it difficult to process foods and get the necessary nutrients and vitamins. Depending on your drug of choice, you could benefit from talking to your doctor or a nutritionist to discuss the types of foods you should be eating and in what amounts to get the most out of your nutrition choices.
Don’t Stress Out About Food in Recovery!
Though nutrition is important, nobody expects you to eat perfectly, never eating a calorie more or less than you need and avoiding all sweets at all times. Relax. Stress will make it more difficult for you to make good choices so be forgiving, always try to make your next meal or snack the healthiest it can be, and talk to a professional if you feel that you need a little extra guidance in making the right choices.