The gut is a common slang term for your gastrointestinal, or GI, system. This system, which includes the tract running from your mouth to your rectum, allows you to digest food. It also allows you to eliminate food-related waste from your body. If you’re affected by addiction, there’s a good chance that your gut isn’t working as well as it should. This fact helps explain why many women in substance abuse treatment need the support of a nutrient guide. Programs of this type provide essential information on improving your gut health.
The Connection Between Addiction and Gut Health for Women
Your gut does more than just digest food and eliminate food waste. It also has a significant impact on your brain function and addiction risks. How is this possible?
Your GI tract contains something called the enteric nervous system. This system, which lines the walls of your gut, contains tens of millions of nerve cells. Every second of the day, it sends signals to your brain. Your brain also sends signals to your enteric nervous system. This back-and-forth contact affects:
- Your general emotional state from day to day
- Your typical patterns of thought
- How your emotions and thoughts manifest in your typical behavior
As a rule, a properly functioning gut supports positive, healthy emotions, thoughts, and behaviors. In contrast, poor gut health has the opposite effect. In this way, it has a destabilizing impact that makes substance problems more likely to occur.
Improving Gut Health for Women
Gut health can be especially important for women with drug or alcohol problems. That’s true, in large part, because women have higher risks for disordered eating. In turn, the presence of an untreated eating disorder can increase your addiction risks. It can also make it much harder to recover from addiction.
Whether or not you have an eating disorder, certain foods tend to improve the health of your GI system. As a result, they also tend to support a substance-free lifestyle. Specific dietary items with a gut health benefit include:
- Foods that are high in fiber
- Unprocessed, whole grains
- Whole, fresh fruits
- Yogurt and other foods that contain live, health-supporting microorganisms
- Probiotic supplements that have the same kinds of organisms
When improving gut health for women, it’s also essential to limit the consumption of specific dietary items. These items include highly processed foods, red meat, and fried foods.
The Role of Nutrient Therapy for Women
Nutrient therapy for women is often a crucial recovery resource. Even if you don’t have an eating disorder, you may have developed dietary habits that harm your gut health. Unless you undo these habits, your GI function can continue to suffer. As a result, you may also increase the odds that your substance problems will continue.
A nutrient therapy program provides extensive support for improvements in your GI system. Not only will it help you understand the connection between addiction and poor gut health. It will also help you develop positive eating habits that break that connection and support your sobriety.
Turn to Women’s Recovery for More Information and Advice on Gut Health for Women
Want to learn more about the addiction-related impact of poor gut health for women? Contact the treatment professionals at Women’s Recovery. We’re standing by to assist you with timely expertise and advice.
Women’s Recovery also features rehab options specifically designed to meet women’s unique needs. Those options include a comprehensive nutrition therapy program. They also have a specialized program for the overlapping symptoms of addiction and eating disorders. For more information on our women-centered, customized approach, call us today at 833.754.0554. We’re also available through our online message form.