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How To Lose Weight in Addiction Recovery & Stay Healthy

Weight gain or loss are common effects of drug use. Even during recovery, addicts may still encounter these effects due to their choice of drug’s long-term consequences to the body. Recovering heroin addicts, for instance, can still experience the drug’s physical and emotional side effects for years, even after detoxing and the withdrawal stage.

While recovering, patients need to maintain a healthy weight to help them stay fit and preoccupied. But because of the drug’s long-term effects, many would find it hard to maintain a healthy weight. The good news is you can do something about it. Read on to find out more about how recovering addicts lose weight.

Addiction Aftermath

During addiction recovery, people who have abused substances in the past continue to face problems in some aspects of their life, like academics, mental health, and relationships. They also face the serious consequences of their actions with their family and community. Other things that can happen when you’re dealing with addiction include:

Withdrawal Syndrome

Withdrawal syndrome is a common medical problem recovering addicts face. Your body works hard to maintain equilibrium; if a chemical is suddenly taken out of balance, the body’s counter-regulatory systems may cause unwanted side effects in trying to restore balance. These withdrawal symptoms may vary, depending on the severity of the addiction.

Internal Effects of Addiction

Addiction can have adverse effects on major organs, including liver disease, kidney damage, liver failure, liver cirrhosis, and certain types of cancer. It can even lead to death. Alcohol and drugs also affect the immune system, making addicts more susceptible to diseases and viruses.

External Effects of Addiction

Substance abuse can also impact a person’s hair, nails, weight, skin, and teeth. It can lead to skin lesions, acne, and baldness. Sometimes, it also causes male-pattern hair growth. People recovering from addiction sometimes gain weight because they have a better appetite. However, this weight gain can sometimes lead to low self-esteem or other health complications. Patients undergoing rehabilitation are encouraged to exercise to improve their health. A sobriety weight loss routine helps ensure a recovering patient’s health.

Weight Loss for Addiction Recovery

Dealing with weight gain is already challenging when sober, regardless of the reason. Recovering from addiction makes it more challenging, especially for those who experience extreme weight gain. Maintaining a healthy weight may also remain challenging even after recovery, especially when eating disorders are involved.

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A recovery center in Santa Rosa Beach offers a few tips below to help you maintain a healthy weight safely:

Take Care of What You Eat

Drug use can cause drastic weight loss and decreased appetite. Quitting drug use will allow you to return to regular eating patterns and more calories. This is good, but make sure to consume nutritious, healthy food. Avoid foods with high fat and sugar content, and include brain-healing foods like blueberries and eggs. Keep track of what you consume and how often you eat using a food journal.

Realistic Goals are Important

Although it is exciting to think about changing your lifestyle or losing weight, setting yourself up for failure is not a good idea. Set realistic goals that you can reach without harming yourself. You might only lose some of the weight you want or lose more than you should in a month. Talk with your doctor to help set your goals. They will conduct a physical exam and help you create a safe, effective plan. They may also recommend what foods you should eat to help your recovery and health.

Be Active Every Day

Exercising daily is a good tip for losing weight, especially for those in the early stages of recovery. However, don’t expect to be good at it immediately; your body has been under substance abuse for a while, so it might take some time to heal and be up to par for more physically demanding tasks. Start slow, but be consistent. This won’t result in rapid weight loss, but it will help you live a healthier lifestyle and help manage your weight while recovering.

Change Your Diet

Your diet is directly linked to weight loss, so you should learn to control and change your diet. Exercising for hours on end will be useless if you eat unhealthy foods. Talk to your doctor to discuss creating a healthy diet and choosing the best foods for recovery.

Avoid the Scales

Obsession with numbers can lead to eating disorders. Instead of focusing on numbers, think about how you feel. Instead of focusing on weight after sobriety, give your body more time to heal from prolonged drug or alcohol use.

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Ask for Help

There will be times when you won’t find the motivation to exercise or eat healthily. A friend or family member can support, encourage, and hold you accountable for your exercise and diet.

Key Takeaway

Recovering from addiction may sometimes lead to weight gain. This isn’t bad since it means your body is finally returning to normal eating patterns and habits that make it healthier. However, you should be careful; otherwise, you might gain unwanted weight.

Don’t worry; there are ways to avoid excessive weight gain and keep your body healthy. Replace your diet with a healthier one, watch what you eat, and be physically active. However, set realistic goals for yourself and avoid looking at the scales.

Lastly, you are not alone in this journey; seek help from friends or family to help you stay committed to your journey to wellness.