Nutritional Recovery Tools
For Those Seeking Personal Help:
Are You Looking For Help For Yourself or Someone You Care About?
Whether you have already been in some kind of treatment or not, you will find pages on this site that pertain to your problem. For example, if opiates are a problem, read the page on the nutritional treatment for opiate addiction. Read about nutritional help for family members of addicts if that applies. You’ll find specific suggestions at the end of each section for books and other resources that will give even more details about the specific nutrients you’ll need for your personal recovery project.
Be sure to look at the sections on Pro-Recovery Diet and Amino Acids. At the conclusion of the amino acid section you can take a questionnaire that will quickly show you what feel-good chemicals you are missing and what supplements will almost immediately help you feel better, calmer, more alert, and with dramatically less cravings for foods, drugs, and behaviors.
For Treatment Providers Seeking New Approaches:
For Treatment Providers
If you are a treatment provider who already uses nutritional therapy in your program, the Alliance offers you a chance to network with others who are equally inspired about the impact of nutrition on recidivism and retention. Perhaps you give dietary advice or use oral supplements and would like to know more about intravenous formulas and protocols. Perhaps you would like more information on safe detoxification of patients from benzodiazepenes or opiates. Newsletters, call-ins, roundtables, mentoring, consulting; all of these networking resources can be available to you. We hope that you will let us know if there is something you'd like to see here that we don't yet offer.
If you have not yet begun to use nutritional therapy you will be amazed by the positive responses of your clients.
How do nutrition-wise providers organize treatment?
First, they make room in their treatment program for this critically important key to recovery.
Based on the results from questionnaires, history-taking, and in some cases lab tests, we offer our clients individualized oral supplements divided into several doses on a daily basis.
We also provide a pro-recovery diet and/or teach clients what it includes and how to prepare it to correct the biochemical abnormalities that both cause and are caused by addictive disorders. Clients learn to avoid white sugar, white flour, and other processed foods of all kinds. They learn to consume protein at each meal to rebuild their neurotransmitters and every other tissue in their bodies, plus lots of vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, beans, and whole grains, as tolerated, to supply the B vitamins and other vitamins, minerals, and beneficial fats needed for a healthy body and nervous system.
Third, we may offer intravenous nutrients titrated according to need, especially in early detox.
Clients who want to feel well, think clearly, and eliminate their cravings, need healthful food and take supplementary nutrients, the only fuels that can provide them enough strength for the road to recovery. Remove the sugar and white flour from their diet and make sure to provide plenty of pro-recovery food. New practitioners should consider conducting a pilot trial with just a few clients. If it works well, then provide the amino acids for everyone. Watch your relapse rate plummet.
How One Treatment Program Integrated the Nutritional Essentials
One of the Alliance cofounders was the owner of a large urban residential treatment program. There they served wonderful organic food, provided supplements of many kinds, exercise including yoga, and many innovative healing methods in addition to extensive counseling and 12 Step programming. He assumed he was offering the nutritional cutting edge. However, when another, more nutritionally experienced, Alliance member pointed out that his program was not yet providing individualized amino acid therapy, he hired her as a consultant. She started by speaking to the residents and staff about why their program was about to add an exciting new recovery tool to make them more comfortable faster in recovery. She explained what specific benefits they would typically be expected to experience: Much fewer cravings, more energy, and less pain, depression, and anxiety. Then they filled out a one page neurotransmitter deficiency questionnaire which indicated which amino acids could be used to bring this all about.
Approximately 30 clients got in line and came up to the desk where the consultant and the program owner were sitting. They handed her their questionnaire and she handed them whichever amino acids were indicated. At least fifteen minutes after taking the aminos they all got in line again to report on the effects. When they reported their responses and showed the owner their new scores on the questionnaire, he was stunned. All reported specific significant benefits that his great program had not yet been able to help them attain! He’d never imagined such early symptom relief was possible.
One war vet with severe phantom pain in his amputated arm, an opiate addict, was pain-free for the first time. Stimulant addicts were much more alert and energized. Depressed clients were smiling. Their symptom severity scores were cut in half or better!
The next day the consultant met with the staff to trial them on the aminos. That, too, was very successful. Afterwards, the consultant, the owner, and his top administrator designed a system for implementing the individualized amino acid therapy; They used the same symptom questionnaire to access and trial all new residents and to monitor progress and adjust amino doses as needed with existing clients. It went into effect as soon as their amino acid supplies arrived and went very smoothly, because staff and residents were both enthusiastic and committed. It continued to provide the same benefits as the first trials had taught them to expect.
As a recovery professional, by joining the Alliance you can receive help in bringing this nutritional recovery technology to your own clients.
We have added an article first published in The Townsend Letter in 2007 about a holistic addiction treatment program in a criminal justice setting that incorporated nutritional supplements, food, nutrition education, Chinese and aerobic exercise, and ear acupuncture, some of these modalities multiple times a week. The resources offered at the conclusion of the article have been recently updated.