Daily Nutrition Guidelines in Early Recovery

Recovery from alcoholism or drug addiction often means recovery from a sustained period of malnutrition. We believe the sooner you reestablish a healthy daily diet, the sooner your brain and body will recover.

Let’s be perfectly clear, food choices matter. Practicing a healthy diet promotes health, helps you attain and sustain a healthy body weight, and reduces your risks of chronic disease. The ideal daily diet should include fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean protein and low-fat dairy, while simultaneously limiting foods high in saturated fat, tropical oils, and sugar-sweetened beverages.

Average Daily Calories

2000 calories for women
2500 calories for men

Menu Breakdown

Breakfast – 500 (female) – 600 (male) calories
Snack – 100 (female) – 200 (male) calories
Lunch – 500 (female) – 600 (male) calories
Snack – 100 (female) – 200 (male) calories
Dinner – 600 (female) – 700 (male) calories
Snack – 200 calories

Food Energy

Carbohydrates, proteins, and fats supply 100% of our diet’s energy.
Carbohydrates = 45-65% Ideal = 45%
Protein = 10-35% Ideal = 30%
Fat = 20-35% Ideal = 25%

Does cooking affect protein, fat and carbohydrate content?


In general, cooking does not significantly affect the protein content in beef, pork, chicken or fish. The key to maintaining protein content is to not overcook. However if you boil your foods it may reduce a small amount of minerals and vitamins, as they tend to leach out into the water. Another exception is boiled fish, which retains more Omega-3’s as compared to pan frying or broiling.

Protein Grams Per Item

Chicken = 8.5 grams protein per ounce
Pork Loin = 7 grams protein per ounce
Beef = 7 grams protein per ounce
Fish = 6.5 grams protein per ounce (cooked)
Nuts/Seeds = 4 grams per ounce
Egg approximately 2 ounces = 6 prams protein or 3 grams per ounce
Milk = 1 gram protein per ounce

Precook Weight vs Post-cook Weight

Pork = 10 oz/pre-cook = 4+ oz./post-cook = 70 grams protein
Chicken = 10 oz/pre-cook = 5oz/post-cook = 85 grams protein
Beef = 8 oz/pre-cook beef = 4oz/post-cook = 56 grams protein
Fish = 7oz/precook fish = 5 oz/post-cook = 45+ grams protein


When it comes to fat content, cooking does reduce the amount of fat. Cooking typically reduces fat content by almost half, which is a significant benefit to you especially if you’re trying to lose weight or lower your cholesterol levels.

The most dangerous types of fat are trans fats, which we now know actually raise LDL or “bad” cholesterol, and lower HDL, or “good” cholesterol. They’re so bad in fact that the FDA has moved to completely eliminate trans fats from all processed foods. The reason the FDA is acting so severely is because eating trans fats increases the risk of developing heart disease, type 2 diabetes and stroke.


Carbohydrates, a.k.a. carbs are the sugars, starches and fibers found in fruits, grains, vegetables and dairy. When it comes to carbs, they tend to remain unchanged during the cooking process.

The glycemic index of carbohydrates represents how easily a particular carbohydrate increases blood sugar levels.


Basic Cooking Concepts and Terms

Mirepoix – carrots, celery, onion added to food for flavor
Au jus – “with juice” juices given off by meat during cooking

See: Fatty Liver Diet