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  • Paige Smathers

126: The Intersection Between Addiction and Nutrition


Nutrition during addiction recovery is an often very misunderstood and mischaracterized element of healing. Healing from addiction requires a multi-faceted approach and nutrition can play an important role. However, it's not the end-all-be-all of wellbeing. In this podcast episode, Tessa Acker, MPH, RD and I talk about our work in the Substance Use Disorder (SUD) world where we both engage in nutrition groups for those in recovery.

We talk about why this intersection is so tricky and how the structure of recovery is helpful in so many ways but can often be extremely challenging when navigating food.

Tessa Acker is a registered dietitian with a Master's in Public Health Nutrition from the University of Minnesota, where she focused on underserved and disadvantaged populations. She pursued this field with the belief that nutrition is the foundation for a healthy life and wanted to help others obtain, learn about, and enjoy healthy foods. She began her career working on international nutrition issues with the United Nations and Clinton Foundation in Peru and Malawi, but has since returned to the United States to work with her brother, Ian Acker, at Fit To Recover (FTR). FTR is a community center and gym for people in recovery from SUDs. Tessa is the founder and lead dietitian of the nutrition pillar, Food to Recover, where she aims to help people in recovery see the role nutrition can play during recovery and in their everyday lives, develop and maintain a healthy relationship with food, and gain skills and knowledge to feel confident making their own food and nutrition choices. Tessa is also a certified yoga teacher and enjoys all of the adventures that Utah has to offer.

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