Stay on Top of Your Recovery by Staying in Shape and Losing Weight
When you’re struggling to avoid cravings, work through old emotional issues, treat co-occurring mental health disorders, and learn how to live life with a completely different perspective, you need to grab every resource at your disposal to make the process as smooth as possible. In addition to being actively involved in your own recovery, showing up and engaging in your therapy sessions, and following your relapse prevention plan, you can also turn your attention to your physical health. The better you feel physically, the better you will feel mentally – and the better you feel mentally, the less likely you are to relapse in drug addiction recovery.
Losing Unneeded Weight Benefits Physical and Mental Health
Many people gain weight in early recovery because, during active addiction, their focus was not on eating well. Opiates and stimulants are both appetite suppressants and those who stay high often lose large amounts of weight. During detox, many pack on the pounds. Having avoided eating for so long, many don’t know when to stop and overindulge, just as they did with the drugs. Others use food as a way to self-medicate the emotions they feel in early recovery.
Tips to Get Started
No matter how it starts, it’s important to put a stop to it as soon as you recognize the problem. Allowing it to continue only invites health problems, self esteem issues, and relapse. If you’re body mass index (BMI) is in the overweight or obese range, it’s time to get started. You can:
- Keep a food journal. You may not be aware just how many calories you’re ingesting every day until you write it down. Don’t just track calories, though – it’s important that you eat a wide range of healthy foods. Your diet should be heavy in fruits and vegetables and light on saturated fats and sugars.
- Don’t skip meals. It kicks your body into starvation mode, causing it to hoard calories. Breakfast starts your metabolism in the morning and gives you the energy you need to function.
- Drink lots of water. Staying hydrated will help you feel better as you flush out toxins.
- Exercise. Keep track of your exercise, mixing cardio and light weights. You’ll increase bone strength, flexibility, circulation, and improve your mood all while losing weight.
What are your tips for sticking to a weight loss plan during early recovery? Leave us a comment below and share it with us.