Many characteristics of food and activities associated with food make it an ideal therapeutic modality to include in a composite approach to the treatment of chemical dependency.
Of primary importance in the successful treatment of chemical dependency is the concept of satiety: the state of being satisfied. When we consume our drug (or drugs) of choice, we reach a point of satisfaction, but only momentarily - just as with food.
Our I lives begin with hunger. The first breath brings a cry and the second brings another: the universally understood request, not for warmth or company or safety, but for food. And when the babe latches the teat and the cry disappears, everyone nearby can relax for the prospect of satisfaction by proxy. Our brains are hardwired for hunger -from the beginning and forever so that when a nearby baby stops crying everybody not only understands but feels the relief and the satiety as the baby does. It’s that primordial to who we are as humans.
Gosh it would be so simple if we could just replace our drug of choice with our food of choice but no, food just helps. However, when approached in the right way it helps a lot…and you’ll need it. Even with help, getting off drugs or alcohol is not easy and it does not happen by itself. Engaging food in this mindful way will help you resolve your chemical dependency.
When you learn to manage food you are engaging, if involuntarily, several important matters essential to the resolution of chemical dependency, namely: 1) cravings and how to cope with the simple craving of hunger, and by such practice the complex cravings for our drug of choice 2) self-care as expressed by food choices. The choices you make of what to eat and when have an amazing effect on your physical well being because when you eat well you feel good and your body works better. When you feel better you have less anxiety, less cravings, and
3) beyond adherence to the principles of healthy eating, many food choices actually help to reduce anxiety directly which reduces cravings. Lemon balm and valerian root are examples of anti-anxiety foods.
A good diet begins with low fat sources of protein like chicken, fish, or vegetable protein, some cuts of beef and eggs. Knowing that fat is already in most of our protein sources and knowing that fat is twice as rich in calories as other foods, we must reduce our intake of high fat foods accordingly. And, knowing that some fats are good for you while others are not we must choose healthy sources of fat over others such as avaocados, salmon, and coconut oil. Vegetables can be viewed as either starchy like Peas or fibrous like celery or cabbage or in between like carrots or potatoes. To avoid caloric over-intake we choose fibrous or mid-range vegetables. Fruits contain sugars in a blend of sucrose and fructose with the former available to burn while the latter goes straight to fat. To avoid fat deposition we choose fruits like plums and apples for moderate intake and we eat fruits like peaches and pineapples only sparingly.
Thankfully, elements of the good diet (as we see it) are commonly woven into the creative recipes of Tik Tok contributors like Canadian girl Kirsten Deneka with her ultimate grilled cheese, Erika Vetrinni, and her upgraded chicken Parmesan and many others . The recipes are universally simple, appetizing and a delightful variation on the same, old same-old.
So, after you’ve read through this page once and the part about the good diet twice, you fire up the iPad and start hopping through one delicious recipe video after another. They’re all delicious and healthy and easy to make with ingredients listed for making shopping lists. You’ll stay a day or two ahead with menu planning. Groceries will be delivered and boom! Yer cookin’ with gas. It’s fun. It’s tasty. And there’s no hangover. Alternating with outside days, you’ll be following and practicing this method for yourself and others both now and, hopefully, if we did our work right, once you graduate as well.
One you learn the basics of the good diet and the tricks of tik tok recipes and digital shopping lists, other features of nutritional choices can become part of the daily routine. The literature is rife with foods to reduce pain, foods to help avoid cancer, and foods to avoid for a bunch of good reasons. This can be woven into your dietary routine as well.
Some of us can cook while others of us cannot. That’s ok, weather learning anew or by reminder, food creation is good for the soul. Growing your own food and then cooking it is a fantastically therapeutic for anyone, not just the addicted. Ergo we have the vertical hydroponic garden project; The chicken and goat project and the outdoor garden project which you can read about elsewhere on the site.
Can you resolve chemical dependency with food and cooking ? Sadly, no. But along with medically assisted treatment, evidence based counseling, and complimentary therapies, yer damn straight you can ! Stop by for a nosh ! We’ll show you all about it !