April 12th is National Grilled Cheese Day! A day that Americans mark one of their most favorite comfort foods. It's no wonder that this easy to make recipe is so popular: bread, cheese and butter are highly palatable foods—combined, and you’ve got a meal that sets off your brain’s feel good chemicals off the charts, in the same way as drugs and alcohol. Can you eat foods like grilled cheese and stay ‘healthy’ in your recovery? I’d argue that you can.
When I arrived into recovery, my body was ravaged by addiction. I spent the first 18 months exhausted. I was 150 pounds overweight and I felt terrible most of the time. Nobody told me about the importance of a holistic recovery. There was no emphasis on looking after my physical health. Skip forward a year, at three years sober, while not as tired, I still felt terrible.
We all know that eating right makes a huge difference for your health. It’s common sense: eat well, feel good. Sometimes, that isn’t enough of an incentive. How many times have I (and others) bemoaned gaining a few pounds in recovery, but not wanting to do anything about it, because it isn’t causing the same harm as drugs or alcohol? I’m not here to tell you to do something about your extra weight, but I am here to tell you how you can boost your recovery by eating right. Today, I want to focus on the importance of food and the role it plays in recovery, starting first with demystifying carbohydrates.
I woke up this morning feeling exhausted. Tomorrow, I move for the fifth time in two months. I knew relocating continents would take its toll, but hadn’t expected just how tiring it would be. I thought that once I landed here, in Portland, I would feel settled. Sometimes things just don’t work out how you see them, and the right thing to do is move, as much as I don’t want to. My point is that sometimes; we don’t feel like doing the things that help us the most -- like self-care.
Nearly five years ago, I was rapidly drinking myself into an early grave. I was popping pills like they were candy. I wanted to die. Today, in stark contrast, I love my life. Over the coming weeks, I’ll share with you my journey to rock bottom, my journey in recovery, and how I came to live a fulfilling life in recovery; losing 50 pounds, overcoming depression and anxiety, and dealing with life in recovery.