During an alcohol detox, it is especially criticial to stay on top of your diet and to have a well-balanced, nutritious diet which keeps you hydrated. This blog post looks at the different foods which you should eat during an alcohol detox and the importance of staying hydrated during a detox.
Many people who have been having a diet of alcohol only take a couple of days before they are able to eat. What tends to happen is that their calorie intake is high when they are drinking, but those are empty calories with no nutritional value. They then get very hungry after a couple of days of not drinking, so, around the 3rd day of the detox, they will be eating
The Importance of Hydration
When you undertake an alcohol detox, your body has to get to used to less intake of fluid than usual as you cut the amount of alcoholic drinks you consume. In addition, withdrawal symptoms such as vomiting, sweating and diarrhoea can lead to dehydration. This makes it critical to drink plenty of water to replenish the fluids you have lost and rehydrate your body.
Alcohol actually dehydrates people which is why people experience hangovers. After a sustained period of heavy drinking, a person can be severely dehydrated and we recommend that people drink between 2 and 2.5L of clear fluids (water, squash) a day at the start of the detox. This should be sipped throughout the day as drinking it quickly could lead to vomiting. Being well hydrated will help the medication to get around the body and work more effectively.
The Best Foods For An Alcohol Detox
The following six types of food are strongly recommended to individuals who are undertaking an alcohol detox. This is because of the benefits they have which can help ease the detox process:
Whole grains are an excellent source of getting fibre into your diet as they provide energy, through carbohydrates, and Vitamin B, which stimulate the immune system as well as other health benefits. In addition, whole grain foods are good for the gut and can support a healthy liver and kidneys- which are key for the detox process.
Examples of whole-grain food include oats, brown rice and wholewheat bread.
2. Foods with High Levels of Vitamin B
When you consume alcohol heavily and for a prolonged period of time, then you could find yourself lacking in vitamin B. As mentioned, vitamin B has a range of health benefits including:
- Increased energy
- Enhanced mood
- Improved memory
- Boost skin and hair health
- Stimulation of the immune system
- Formation of red blood cells
Example of food which are a rich source of vitamin B include salmon, poultry, dairy, beans, lentils and leafy green vegetables.
In particular, vitamin B1 is likely to be deficient. A longterm deficiency of vitamin B1 can lead to alcohol-related dementia later in life. Among the items prescribed for a detox will be thiamine which is vitamin B1 in tablet form. It is very important that this is taken as prescribed.
3. Proteins Which Are Low In Fat
When you undergo an alcohol detox, people tend to have a lack of appetite or simply will not want to eat. As a result, it is important to consume foods which have high levels of protein to encourage your body to repair and so you can feel full.
Foods which are an excellent source of protein but also has low levels of fat include eggs, seafood, chicken, lentils and soy
4. Omega 3 Fats
Another type of food you should look to eat during detox is foods with high levels of omega-3 fats. Omega 3 is beneficial during an alcohol detox because it helps reduce inflammation, stabilise your mood and improve brain function.
Foods which have high levels of omega 3 include salmon and walnuts
5. Fruits and Vegetables
The final food group which you should eat plenty of during an alcohol detox are fruits and vegetables. This is because, due to them being high in fibre, fruits and veg digest slowly, which means that blood sugars and hunger can be regulated. In addition, fruits contain natural sugars, which can help beat cravings of sweet foods. Finally, fruits are naturally hydrating and are packed with antioxidants, which have a range of health benefits
Are You Looking For A Private Alcohol Detox?
At Alcohol Home Treatment, we offer a private alcohol home detox programme from £800. This includes regular check ups with Paul Turner – a qualified mental nurse with over 25 years of experience in helping those with alcohol struggles. Our Alcohol detox also includes a full medical assessment, the prescription of medicine following check ups as well as a confidential support line, which you can access at any time of day. Contact us today to learn more.