Consistent and long-term substance use can cause the body to develop poor eating and drinking habits that do not satisfy nutritional needs. The body reacts differently to different substances, but a balanced diet plan can provide the nutrients that were previously missing, benefitting both mind and body.


Alcohol use disorder depletes the body of B vitamins such as thiamine, folate or folic acid, and B12. Overconsumption of alcohol can deteriorate the stomach lining. Liver and pancreatic functionality are also stunted by AUD. The pancreas breaks down hormones and carbohydrates, and the liver metabolizes toxins, but failure in either organ can lead to imbalances of hormones, proteins, or calories within the body.


Symptoms of opioid use can include diarrhea and vomiting which cause dehydration and expulsion of other nutrients. As with all SUD, adopting a healthy diet will replenish the nutrients necessary in recovery. All bodies under the stress of a SUD need good foods to fuel detoxification and subsequent efforts to maintain sobriety.


Stimulants like cocaine reduce hunger by satisfying pleasure regions within the brain. Malnutrition leaves the body weak and susceptible to disease. Sleep patterns can also be affected by the drugs, leaving the body without proper rest time or nutrients. A diet that replenishes phosphate, magnesium, and potassium will be best.

Sometimes, after seeking recovery, an individual coping with stimulant SUD will feel compelled to overeat, which will shock the digestive system. A dietician, physician, therapist, or combination of the three will assist that person to adopt an effective diet plan.

What Does a Healthy Diet Plan Look Like?

The brain produces more serotonin, the chemical that is thought to increase feelings of relaxation and happiness, when more complex carbohydrates are introduced into the diet. Fruits, vegetables, beans, and wheat are all good sources of complex carbohydrates.

Protein, like lean meats or tofu, will repair muscle tissue that may have broken down due to SUD. Fibrous foods, such as fruits, nuts, or dark green vegetables will keep your stomach full and aid in the regulation of your digestive system.

Vitamin and mineral supplements may also be a good addition to the diet as long as they are recommended by a dietician or physician. Sugars, caffeine, and other foods with low nutritional value should be avoided as they can reduce hunger and replace foods with the necessary nutrients.

If you are ready to start your journey to recovery, call Alta Loma Transformational Services today. You know your needs better than anybody else, and our team of mental health and addiction recovery experts will work with you to develop a unique treatment plan that works for mind, body, and soul. At Alta Loma, we want to equip you with the tools you need to enjoy a lifetime of wellness. Your recovery is our priority. Please call us today at (866) 457-3843 for a consultation.