How Nutrition & Exercise Can Improve Mental Health In Addiction Recovery

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Addiction recovery is a challenging process that involves overcoming physical dependence and tackling the underlying psychological issues that led to substance abuse. For individuals in addiction recovery, mental health issues such as depression, anxiety, and stress can be familiar, and these conditions can significantly impact their ability to maintain sobriety. However, there are several ways that individuals in addiction recovery can improve mental health, including nutrition and exercise.

The Role Of Nutrition In Addiction Recovery

Nutrition plays a critical role in addiction recovery by providing the body with essential nutrients that help support physical and mental health. During addiction, the body may become depleted of essential vitamins and minerals, leading to various health problems, including depression, anxiety, and insomnia. Therefore, individuals in addiction recovery need to consume a balanced diet that includes various types of foods to help replenish the body’s nutritional stores.

Nutrition plays a critical role in addiction recovery by providing the body with essential nutrients that help support physical and mental health.

Essential Nutrients

Some essential nutrients for mental health include omega-3 fatty acids, B vitamins, vitamin D, and magnesium. Omega-3 fatty acids, found in olive oil and nuts, have been shown to help improve mood and reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety. B vitamins in whole grains and leafy greens are essential for proper brain function and can help reduce stress and anxiety. Vitamin D, primarily obtained through sunlight exposure and fortified foods, has been shown to help increase dopamine levels. Magnesium, found in nuts, seeds, and whole grains, can help reduce anxiety symptoms and improve sleep.

The Role Of Regular Exercise

Exercise is an essential aspect of addiction recovery that offers numerous benefits. Physical activity can decrease stress and anxiety, enhance mood, and promote better sleep, which are all critical to mental health and overall well-being. Endorphins are natural feel-good chemicals stimulated by exercise and can help alleviate symptoms of depression and anxiety.

Moreover, exercise can help individuals in recovery develop healthy coping mechanisms and replace substance abuse with positive habits. Physical activity provides a healthy outlet for stress and anxiety and can help individuals feel more in control of their emotions and thoughts. It can also help individuals build self-esteem and confidence, which are vital to maintaining sobriety.

Exercise is an essential aspect of addiction recovery that offers numerous benefits.

Types Of Exercise for Mental Health

Several types of exercises can benefit mental health in addiction recovery. One type is aerobic exercise, which includes running, cycling, swimming, and brisk walking. Aerobic exercise has been shown to improve mood, reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression, and increase overall well-being. It can also help individuals sleep better, which is crucial for maintaining mental health.

Another type of exercise that can benefit mental health in addiction recovery is strength training, which involves using weights and resistance bands to build muscle and improve physical strength.

Overcoming Barriers To Exercise In Recovery

While exercise can be a valuable tool for individuals in addiction recovery, it can also be challenging to incorporate into daily routines. Some common challenges individuals in recovery may face when trying to exercise regularly include a lack of motivation, physical limitations, and time constraints.

Lack of motivation is a common challenge, as individuals in recovery may be dealing with low energy levels or feelings of depression. To overcome this, setting small, achievable goals can be helpful, such as walking for 10 minutes a day or doing a short yoga routine. Finding an exercise buddy or joining a group fitness class can also be helpful for added support and accountability.

Lack of motivation is a common challenge, as individuals in recovery may be dealing with low energy levels or feelings of depression.

Mental Health In Addiction Recovery At Launch Centers

At Launch Centers in Los Angeles, we understand the critical role that nutrition and exercise play in addiction recovery. Our comprehensive addiction treatment programs include a range of holistic therapies, including nutritional counseling, fitness training, and mindfulness practices, to help individuals improve their mental health and well-being.

Our team of experienced addiction treatment professionals works closely with each individual to develop a personalized treatment plan that addresses their needs and goals. We believe a comprehensive approach to addiction recovery that includes traditional and holistic therapies can help individuals achieve lasting sobriety and a higher quality of life.

If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction, contact Launch Centers in Los Angeles today to learn more about our comprehensive addiction treatment programs.

About Our Founder

Jose Hernandez, for over a decade, has been involved in alcohol and addiction recovery helping people succeed in overcoming substance abuse and regaining control of their lives. He has experience in all aspects of the recovery world, from facilitating entry into treatment as an intervention specialist to counseling and case management at rehabilitation facilities. Jose has worked one-on-one with individuals as a sober companion and with groups as a resident counselor at addiction treatment centers and is certified by the California Association of Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Counselors (CAADAC) to practice as a substance abuse counselor.

Through his professional experiences in crisis intervention, drug and alcohol detoxification, substance abuse counseling, and relapse prevention, Jose has developed a unique plan for case management that bridges the gap between a person’s painful past of substance abuse and a future of sobriety.

At Riviera Recovery, a sober living facility with multiple locations, clients continue their transition from the supportive environment of a treatment center to living well and happily in the “real” world. The program he designed at Riviera Recovery personalizes treatment plans that enable clients, including those with a single or dual-diagnosed mental health disorder, to embrace a satisfying life.

His greatest endeavor has been establishing LAUNCH, a Los Angeles-based life skills intensive outpatient program for young adults. LAUNCH works with recovering men and women to establish personal vocational and educational goals and develop the tools to successfully meet them. His mission is to ensure that no one stands alone in his or her recovery.

Meet Our Clinical Team

staff member drug alcohol treatment los angeles

Jess Beck, LCSW

Clinical Director

treatment team los angeles ca

Eric Chaghouri, MD


chloe kruskol los angeles rehab team

Chloe Kruskol, LCSW

Family Program Manager

Our Testimonials

Clients and Professionals Share Their Experience

  • HO

    Launch provided care on multiple levels. The highly skilled therapist coupled with the focus on purpose and long-term goals refocused my recovery from what previous treatment centers pushed onto me. I went from believing that I needed years of treatment to believing I needed years happiness and success. I began to focus on what I wanted to accomplish with my life. I came to realize all the things my addiction and mental illness had taken from me, and I used my future goals as a reason to never pick up again. Due to the passion that Launch instilled in me, I have pursued my future with excitement and dedication.

  • Nicole

    This place changed my life! I’ve had good laughs, good cries, shared a lot of heart to heart moments and grew a loving bond with everyone at Launch Centers. I will always be grateful!!! I really do miss it time to time. I highly recommend Launch Centers!

  • Joey

    The staff and clinicians are amazing and make you feel right at home from the second you walk in the door. I would absolutely recommend this place for a family member or close friend.

  • Ben

    This treatment facility has changed my life. I have always struggled with my mental health and this young adult program provided me with the necessary skills to launch to adulthood. I commend anyone who struggles with mental health or substance use (which was not me) to try this program out. It will change your life.

  • Conner

    Launch Centers Treatment was a major help to me. The therapists and staff genuinely cared about me and truly helped me to make a plan for my future. My personal therapists helped me to discover where some of my deeper issues came from. All of the staff worked tirelessly with me to talk through my issues, or just about life, and offered realistic solutions to my current problems and situation. All of the staff went above and beyond and advocated relentlessly for me. I am very grateful that I was able to have such a wonderful experience with Launch.

  • Adam

    In no uncertain terms Launch Centers changed my life. The staff at Launch are professional, knowledgable and relatable. They keep the format diverse and interesting which kept me engaged in the process. The greatest thing we can do in life is seek to improve ourselves. Launch gave me a skill set I consider to be invaluable in the journey of becoming the best version of myself. I would implore anybody considering Launch to step outside their comfort zone and go, you will not regret it.


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