Did you know that drinking alcohol can build up toxins in your body that can increase your risk of cancer and leads to almost 50% of liver disease deaths? While stopping alcohol consumption is a good choice for your health, it doesn’t mean it’s easy. Addiction recovery from drinking, as well as just stopping drinking in general, can be tough on the body as it flushes out toxins and adjusts to functioning without alcohol. Your diet can have a huge impact on how you recover after quitting drinking. Not sure what types of foods you should be eating during recovery? Keep reading to learn more about foods for alcohol withdrawal.
1. (Green) Vegetables“Eat your vegetables” isn’t just something that moms tell kids; it’s actually very important for your health, especially when detoxing. Vegetables contain essential vitamins and minerals that can benefit anyone, but perhaps especially those in recovery. Alcoholics are often deficient in key nutrients that vegetables can easily give you. And while all vegetables can add something healthy to your diet, dark green vegetables are particularly amazing for their health benefits. Things like kale, spinach, collard greens, and lettuce contain beta-carotene, calcium, folic acid, and essential B vitamins. Vegetables are also metabolized quickly, which will keep you full and give you instant energy. The fiber can also help regulate digestion.
2. FruitFruit supplies many of the same benefits that vegetables do in a recovery diet including quick digestion for fast energy as well as containing nutrients like antioxidants and vitamin C. What makes fruit one of the best foods for alcohol withdrawal is that oftentimes people in recovery will crave sweet things. But going for a doughnut or a candy bar will probably just make you feel sick and sluggish. Grabbing a piece of fruit can satisfy those wicked sugar cravings and give you a good source of carbs for energy. The combination of nutrients, sugar, and energy are all great for flushing out toxins and healing a likely damaged body.
3. Lean Protein SourcesFruit and vegetables provide great carb sources, but you will definitely need protein as well. The body uses protein to fix damaged cells, so it is a key part of a recovery diet. Try to avoid red meat and very fatty meats as well. Go for things like fish, turkey, or chicken. You can also use plant-based sources like tofu, beans, or lentils. These will give you the protein you need along with nutrients like iron, B6, omega-3s. Protein has also been shown to better your mood and increase your energy, both of which are huge for a successful recovery.
4. Cayenne PepperThis might seem weird, but hear us out. When detoxing from alcohol, sometimes the appetite can be suppressed. It has been shown that when cayenne is added to foods, it can actually increase your appetite. Dr. Elson Haas in his book says that it can also decrease both alcohol cravings and withdrawal symptoms like nausea and pain.
5. Foods with High Vitamin B ContentVitamin B is an essential nutrient that many alcoholics are deficient in, so you’ll need to replenish what you’ve lost. We’ve already mentioned that lean protein and dark green vegetables are great sources of B vitamins. Some others include: