Nutrition Education for Addiction Recovery

During addiction recovery, the emphasis is typically on what people are no longer putting into their bodies. While abstaining from substance abuse is the priority, what people are putting into their bodies also matters. Many people overcoming addiction have serious nutritional deficiencies, which can severely impact their overall health. That’s one reason why nutrition education is a key component of our addiction treatment at Silver Pines.

Correcting Nutritional Deficiencies

Individuals struggling with addiction for an extended period often don’t have a balanced and nutritious diet. Additionally, certain substances can leach vitamins and minerals from the body. All of this means that most people entering recovery are lacking critical nutrients, vitamins, and minerals.

To put our clients on the path to nutritional wellness, we serve nutritious and delicious meals every day, paying special attention to dietary needs and preferences. Our executive chef specifically designs the menu to boost clients’ nutrition. Food can be one of the best ways to improve health, and an anti-inflammatory diet can even speed up the recovery process.

During treatment, clients are also educated on which foods are key to their overall health, and our executive chef prepares foods for them that meets all their nutrition needs. Further into recovery, clients start to participate and learn how they can maintain a nutritious diet beyond treatment.

Meet Our Executive Chef: Andreana Ferrari, BC, Certified Nutrition Coach

Andreana was raised in the family restaurant business, learning the joy and importance of good food and hospitality at a young age. She went on to receive her Bachelor of Science at Pennsylvania State University in Hotel Restaurant and Institutional Management. Dre found her home at Silver Pines in 2017 as a place where she could combine her passions for culinary creation and helping others. In her role as Executive Chef, she focuses on holistic wellness by serving a variety of fare that addresses nutritional needs and comforts the soul. As a Nutrition Coach, Dre works to educate clients about the benefits of a balanced diet and to facilitate the inclusion of healthy eating behaviors as a part of sustainable recovery and wellbeing. She’s current working on becoming a Certified Health and Wellness Coach.

Maintaining a Healthy Weight

It’s normal for weight to fluctuate during addiction recovery. Many people arrive at treatment malnourished and underfed, often because food isn’t a priority when under the influence of drugs or alcohol. For these individuals, gaining weight by eating three healthy meals a day is normal.

While some individuals gain weight during recovery, others may lose weight. For example, individuals addicted to depressants like alcohol or opioid painkillers might suddenly have more energy to be active, which can lead to weight loss. Whether individuals need to gain or lose weight for optimal health, nutrition certainly plays a role.

Learning About Long-Term Food Preparation

In treatment at Silver Pines, having access to nutritious food is a definite benefit, however, clients won’t have this 24/7 nutritional support for their entire lives. That’s why food preparation education is a vital component of our programming.

The nutrition education component of treatment at Silver Pines focuses on fostering food security and skill building that includes food preparation, interactive cooking groups, and individual coaching. We have “Around the World Wednesdays” where we highlight international comfort food for our clients. We also have a “Guest Chef Series” during which clients work with our kitchen staff to cook a meal or a snack for the entire facility.

The nutrition-related skills that clients learn help them as they complete treatment and live independently. From grocery shopping to kitchen hygiene, these skills can become lifelong assets in the fight for sobriety and holistic health.

What Our Alumni Are Saying

I mean, I can’t say enough about how they make sure the food is exactly what you want, and they also make sure to substitute if it’s something you don’t like.

Grateful Silver Pines Alumnus

Amazing counselors, services, and unique program content including nutrition education, holistic therapy, art therapy, and more. I would highly recommend for anyone considering treatment!

Grateful Silver Pines Alumnus

Great program, good community, respectful people, and great food.

Grateful Silver Pines Alumnus

The kitchen staff are very helpful with people with special diets or picky eaters (like me).

Grateful Silver Pines Alumnus

I loved the whole approach to mind, body and spirit. From healthy meal plans, yoga, meditations, and so much more.

Grateful Silver Pines Alumnus

My experience, the staff, and the food were all great. They work one on one with you. I got my weight up and learned a lot about my disease and who I am.

Grateful Silver Pines Alumnus

The Connection Between Hunger and Relapse

There are many things that can cause a relapse, including hunger. When the body is hungry, thirsty, or lacking in vitamins, it can worsen drug or alcohol cravings. By teaching our clients the importance of eating a proper diet and keeping their blood sugar at normal levels, we help them stave off future cravings and temptations. This is one of the simplest and most effective ways to prevent relapse.

Supplementing Nutrition Education at Silver Pines

Nutrition education is a key component of our addiction treatment programs, but we also offer a wide range of other therapies. Some of the other substance abuse treatment options we offer include:

Nutrition is an aspect of recovery that people often overlook, but it can greatly improve overall health. At Silver Pines in Hazleton, Pennsylvania, comprehensive care contributes to lasting recovery for our clients. Call 866.962.1687 to learn more about how we can help you improve your health and ensure lasting sobriety.