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The Important of Fitness & Nutrition in Mental Health and Addiction Treatment

We have been taught our whole lives to be physically active and also conscious about our health/wellness. There are two other aspects of our individual selves that are just as important. Mental health and nutrition are two other parts of our overall well-being that are important during recovery. At The Beaches Treatment Center, we teach recovery of the mind, body, and spirit.

Nutrition and staying active with exercising are critical when it comes to mental health. Mental health and substance abuse typically go hand in hand, so exercise and nutrition are important to any individual in order to stay healthy- mind, body, and spirit. There are numerous studies that show how according to the advantages of regular exercise and a healthy diet mood is improved and the chances of mental illness are significantly decreased. A Duke University Study was done on physical activity and depression, with results showing where activity was present in a lifestyle, the less likely the person is to experience depression and sadness. With a series of wellness strategies, you can implement exercise and nutrition into your everyday life while having a healthy mind, body and spirit.

Fitness for Mental Health and Addiction

Here are some examples that everyone should be practicing at least three to four times a week for best overall results.

Impacts of Fitness on Mental Health

Any cardio exercise is known to improve sleep and self-esteem while also decreasing overall levels of tension and stabilizing/elevating mood.

Endorphins are produced during physical activity, these feel good brain chemicals make an individual feel better.

Approximately five minutes of aerobic exercise can begin to stimulate anti-anxiety effects.

Anti-anxiety effects can be experienced in as little as five minutes of aerobic exercise.

For many, regular activity and exercise can be just as effective as medication in order to reduce anxiety and depression disorders.

Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA)

At The Beaches Treatment Center, we offer clients gym memberships because we know how important it is to stay physically active in the early recovery process. Clients are so happy to be involved in physical fitness, most of the time during active addiction these activities were neglected. It always feels amazing to get back on track in all aspects of life. Toxins are also “sweat out” during physical activity.

Addiction Recovery Workout Tips

Exercise is great for those in early recovery. We encourage clients to integrate health and wellness into their daily routine. Many of these methods can be done at home or close to home, free of charge, while others require a monthly or annual membership. Having health goals creates a commitment, and these types of goals are important during early recovery.

Easy and Accessible Workouts:

Jogging, Running, Walking, Rolling Blading:

You can literally do this anywhere. Think about it, this can easily be done around your job or home, and there are public trails, parks, and tracks. If you aren’t a fan of running outside, there is also cardio machines at all local gyms. Interval training is one of the best programs for running, which is high intensity- then breaks. It gets the heart pumping! Great for those in early recovery.

Other Gym Programs:

Powerlifting, Zumba, Swimming, Dance, Kickboxing, Crossfit, Body Building and so many more. Most programs are available for both men and women. There are benefits of joining a gym, a big one would be meeting new groups of people. Usually one thing people in the gym favor is their bodies, so they aren’t the people who will be fond of drugs and partying. Most free time is dedicated to physical well-being- so a good new influence of people for early recovery interaction.

Nutrition for Mental Health and Addiction

There are many different healthy foods we should be consuming on a daily basis, each food has a different purpose for your body. In addition to exercise, a balanced diet is a necessary component for a healthy mind. Depression and anxiety are easily avoidable if the proper diet is taken into consideration. At The Beaches Treatment Center, we provide a nutrition guideline that is individually customized by our nutritionist for each and every client.

Power Foods that Benefit Mind

No matter what version of preference you have for eating, vegan, vegetarian and non-vegetarian eaters have options to a variety of nutrient-rich foods that benefit the mind and body. Suggested foods to lower depression are spinach, kale, fruits, nuts and seeds, milk, salmon, turkey, whole grains, beans, basil, orange juice, eggs, and yogurt just to name a few.

Source: Mental Health America

Food in Addiction Treatment

During the initial detox through outpatient, the client will work with a nutritionist that will guide the individual in the proper direction of wellness. Each individual will have different dietary suggestions during their treatment stay according to their individual case-plan, different drug abuse requires different nutrients.

A healthy life is a combination of eating a balanced diet while maintaining exercise and daily activity. We want each and every client to return to life fully healed- mind, body, and spirit.

If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction and need help call us at:

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