Juicing has become popular across the board, but one segment of the population that tends to benefit even more than others is recovering alcoholics. In fact, we have friends who have taken up juicing as an important part of their sobriety. Now, we don’t mean to suggest that one can conquer a serious case of alcoholism with juicing alone. Recovering alcoholics are the first ones to say that it takes marshalling all available resources, but it’s also no secret that sweet tooth is a very common condition among those recovering from alcohol addiction.
It’s a chemical thing. The empty carbohydrates of alcohol tend to lead to hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) over time, which the body naturally tries to counteract by craving sugar. Likewise, many people believe that the sugar craving serves a psychological role as a healthier substitute addiction for alcohol. A sudden intake of sugar can produce the famous rush that sugar is known for. And it’s precisely this point that makes juicing popular among recovering alcoholics, especially those who are looking for this sugar rush from something other than cakes and candy bars.
Juice…Don’t Blend…Don’t Smoothie…Juice!
We recently talked about juicing vs. blending and how blends leave in the fibrous pulp of the fruits and vegetables in more of a smoothie consistency. The presence of this fiber has the effect of slowing down the intake of nutrients, while also cleaning out digestive system. This may sound great, and there’s a lot to be said for blending, but as juices and smoothies show, not all sugar is created equal. If you’re looking to get a concentrated shot of nutrient-rich sugars that serves to quell your cravings as a recovering alcoholic, juicing is the way to go.
No matter how you choose to consume sugar to satisfy your cravings, don’t let these foods be the only thing you eat. Restricting your calories to nothing but these sugars will screw with your metabolism and energy-level long-term. It’s better to eat a well-rounded diet with plenty of protein and some fat, rather than worry about putting a couple extra pounds during your recovery.
Other Ways to Get a Rush
Plus, one way to offset those extra calories is to get plenty of exercise. This, too, serves to generate a substitute high with the endorphins released during and after an exercise routine. And they work really well together! Because juicing gives you a quick shot of energy and nutrients without the bulk of soluble fiber sitting in your gut, it’s easy and natural to juice and then exercise.
Even if you’re at the beginning of your recover and this seems beyond your reach right now, starting with a regular juice habit can be a bridge that helps you find the energy and motivation to then start an exercise routine. One resource builds on another as we sustain and extend and accept our sobriety.