General Wellness

Beyond Risk and Back Podcast

While David Wiss MS RDN was presenting this year at the Cape Cod Symposium on Addictive Disorders he met Aaron Huey of Fire Mountain Programs and they decided to do a podcast together on the importance of nutrition in mental health recovery. This particular episodes focuses on the role of nutrition in early addiction recovery, specifically with teens. In this episode they discuss gastrointestinal health, neurotransmitters, blood sugar, and overall problems with successfully implementing healthful eating in today’s youth. This was an epic episode of Beyond Risk and Back!

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Nutrition in Recovery Group Curriculum is now Available! 

Nutrition in Recovery Curriculum

In 2012, I ran my first weekly nutrition group at a residential drug and alcohol treatment center in Los Angeles where I taught people about the link between nutrition and behavioral health.  We did not have a TV, so I put together various handouts as reading material for group discussions, based on information that I learned through my own treatment in 2005 & 2006. I’ll never forget the excitement of my first year running Nutrition in Recovery groups and building out the curriculum, and becoming a specialist working with this unique population. The experience was magical – I’ve enjoyed being contacted over the years and people sharing memories of that first nutrition group; someone recently told me that my trip with them to the grocery store while they were in treatment changed their life, and they are now sober working as a chef. This is in part due to the Nutrition in Recovery curriculum.

Nutrition in Recovery took off quickly and by 2013, I was running groups at several different treatment centers, conducting individual counseling and occasionally leading hands-on nutrition workshops. I took on dietetic interns and built out a legendary team of dietitians. We have run groups both locally in Southern California as well as internationally and have hosted various forms of staff training. To date we have contracted with over 30 treatment centers, including facilities that treat eating disorders as well as general mental health. During these years, I have refined the Nutrition in Recovery curriculum based on feedback from attendees as well as the facilitators, and of course the rapidly changing nutrition landscape. 

I have always tried to be available, but have never shared any curriculum, until now. The legendary Nutrition in Recovery curriculum is available to you. The content is designed to be delivered by a registered dietitian but can be done by someone who has a proficient background in nutrition and is attuned to recovery culture. Many of the slides have notes under them to help guide you through it all. If you or anyone you know is interested in conducting research using the curriculum, let’s talk.

The Nutrition in Recovery curriculum consists of 24 weeks of educational presentations, handouts, videos, games, activities, and discussion topics, all of which build upon the previous weeks, but can also be used in any order. Some groups include homework, recipes to keep, and are all designed to stimulate excellent discussion. There is no nutritional agenda embedded into the curriculum, it is flexible to a wide range of approaches. It is also eating disorder informed and friendly, and the best part about it is that you will get the actual PowerPoint and Word docs whenever available, so you can customize the curriculum as you see fit! 

  • Week 1: The Basics
  • Week 2: The Nutrition in Recovery Method 
  • Week 3: Fiber the Missing Nutrient
  • Week 4: Incorporating More Fiber
  • Week 5: Budgeting Food During Recovery
  • Week 6: Smoothie Workshop 
  • Week 7: Sugar, Salt, Fat
  • Week 8: Let’s Talk Breakfast
  • Week 9: Substance Substitution 
  • Week 10: Oats Workshop 
  • Week 11: Conversations About Sugar
  • Week 12: Emotional Eating 
  • Week 13: Exercise in Recovery 
  • Week 14: Whole Grains and the Mediterranean Diet 
  • Week 15: Artificial Sweeteners 
  • Week 16: Salad Dressing Workshop 
  • Week 17: Fads and Myths 
  • Week 18: Guess that Plant 
  • Week 19: Binge Eating Solutions 
  • Week 20: Body Image and Disordered Eating 
  • Week 21: Chocolate Bites Workshop 
  • Week 22: So Many Different Approaches 
  • Week 23: Mindful Eating 
  • Week 24: Food Safety 

The cost of the curriculum is $695 and as a limited-time bonus includes a 30-minute consulting session with David Wiss MS RDN within 3 months of purchase. David will also send you his range of academic publications related to nutrition, substance use disorders, and eating disorders. You can use the 30-minute session either to seek clarification on the curriculum, to dive deeper into the research and learn more about the link between nutrition and mental health, or to pick David’s brain about anything. Lastly, those who purchase the curriculum will be added to a special mailing list where we will eventually form a group of nutritionists who work in addiction treatment centers sharing ideas, challenges, and victories. The goal is to one day have a recognized certification, and those who get in now will likely end up as the original leaders. Let’s join forces! 

Questions? Email

Ready to make a payment? Use credit card HERE. 

Please make sure to include the proper email address for correspondence. You will be asked to sign a non-disclosure before receiving the Nutrition in Recovery curriculum. 


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David Wiss Speaking Schedule 2019

Mr. Wiss has three big conferences coming up, and hopes that you will be able to join him at one of them!

We are excited to announce his speaking schedule over the next several months. Please let us know if you will be attending so we can plan a meet up! Cape Cod, London, and Philadelphia here we come!

Cape Cod Symposium on Addictive Disorders (CCSAD) 

September 5-8, 2019, Hyannis MA

Saturday September 7, 10:45am-12:15pm

“Nutrition for Addiction Recovery: Exploring Links Between the Gut and Brain”

Register HERE

International Society of Nutritional Psychiatry Research (ISNPR)

October 20-22, 2019, London UK

Tues October 22, 11:00am-12:30pm

“Moving Toward Nutrition Standards in Substance and Alcohol Use Disorder Treatment”

Register HERE

Food and Nutrition Conference and Expo (FNCE) 

October 26-29, 2019, Philadelphia, PA

Pre-FNCE workshop hosted by Dietitians in Integrative and Functional Medicine (DIFM) 

Saturday October 26, 8:15am-9:30am 

“More than Meets the Eye: How Unseen Factors Impact Nutrition and Health” 

Register HERE 

More information on Wiss Speaking Schedule for Winter 2019-2020 coming soon!

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Dope Wisdom Podcast

The Dope Wisdom Podcast with Yeshaia Blakeney from Recovery Integrity – Interview with David Wiss.

David and Yeshaia discuss addiction, recovery, nutrition, gut health, microbiome, research, and intellectual spiritualism.

Yeshaia Blakeney, host of the Dope Wisdom Podcast and co-founder of Recover Integrity, a Los Angeles addiction treatment program he opened in 2015, is an addiction expert with 15 years of experience working in substance abuse and mental health.

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Los Angeles Conference April 6, 2019

“Dialectics in Dietetics: Multiple Truths in Nutrition Science” Conference April 6, 2019

History of the Conference

At the Los Angeles District of the California Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics annual transition meeting in the summer of 2016, we had a big idea. What if we could throw our own conference?

In 2017 we actually did it and it was epic! Our first conference was called “Public Health and Private Profits: A Dialogue about Critical Topics Shaping the Future of the Dietetic Profession”

Our 2018 conference was called “One Size Does Not Fit All: Promoting Diverse Perspectives in Dietetics” and was also SOLD OUT.

Our April, 6 2019 conference should be the best one yet! “Dialectics in Dietetics: Multiple Truths in Nutrition Science.” We are so thrilled to have such a star-studded line-up this year! The conference is held at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles and is not to be missed!

April 6, 2019

We have special pricing for students, RDNs, and LAD members!

Register for the conference HERE

April 6 will be here before we know it!

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Private Practice

Nutrition in Recovery is a private practice founded by David Wiss MS RDN, who recounts:

The vision was born in 2006 ago when I got sober and used nutrition and exercise as part of my personal recovery. I had made attempts at getting sober previously, but never felt comfortable in my skin, mostly plagued by lethargy and anxiety, which left me pessimistic about sobriety. I had always assumed nutrition was about fitness and weight, which is how it is presented by society. But when I began to exercise and eat a wide range of plant foods, something dramatic happened to my mental health. There were dramatic changes in my body which served as positive reinforcement, but the real outcome was that I became optimistic and found some inner-peace. My thoughts cleared up and so did my skin. My bowel movements became regular, and my heartburn went away. I woke up feeling refreshed in the morning, and when I read recovery-related literature, it was actually sinking in. Previously it seemed as though my eyes were just skimming the page. At that point I knew that nutrition is important for recovery from addiction and wondered why no one ever told me so. From there I was able to quit smoking and became a non-competitive athlete. I can remember being extremely excited to go to the grocery store and buy fresh food to experiment with in the kitchen.

After working as a personal trainer for a few years, I was accepted into a master’s program in nutrition where I completed training to become a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist. I worked at UCLA Medical Center and gained experience with eating disorders. The field of nutrition for addiction recovery was unchartered and I started a private practice immediately after passing my exam. I have not had a slow week since. I have run groups at many different treatment facilities and have trained other dietitians to do the same. I fell in love with academic research and began publishing scientific articles. I taught myself the basics of neuroscience, nutrition-related hormones, and gastrointestinal health. With this information I was able to conceptualize eating behavior in order to create real change in the people I work with. Most of my referrals come from previous clients, and mental health professionals who have seen my work transform people. Currently I am working on my PhD in Public Health from UCLA.

I am not attached to any particular food philosophy. I do not try to convert people to eat the way I eat, although I do eat strategically without much effort. I am a believer in using whole foods and developing life skills to cook and prepare food when possible. Supplements can be helpful, but they are designed to support behavior change. I specialize in helping people to make gradual and stepwise changes in their food choices. I am an expert in nutrition but can serve the role of a coach. I look at the entire dimension of wellness: food, beverage, exercise, supplements, sleep, sunlight, etc. I am recovered, and love to help other people become the same. I spend the first hour collecting information about you and from there will have a better picture of the direction we are headed. Some people need structure, other people just need a safe place to talk about food and body. Some people need tips for grocery shopping, other people just need some accountability for their recovery. I try to find the intersection between giving my clients what they want and giving them what they need. Let’s take a journey together and see where it goes!

About Nutrition in Recovery 1

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Vaping & Disordered Eating Video

Nutrition in Recovery is thrilled about our new monthly newsletter! Get the latest information on Nutrition for Addiction and Disordered Eating! Check out our latest video on Vaping!

This video is about Vaping, which can impact appetite, and be used for weight loss and control. In other words, vaping is linked to disordered eating. Exactly how can vaping relate to disordered eating? Find out the specifics!

Nutrition in Recovery is a group practice of Registered Dietitian Nutritionists and other health professionals who specialize in the treatment of addictions, eating disorders, body image, mental health, as well as general wellness.

We send out a monthly Newsletter summarizing the latest research linking nutrition and mental health. Each newsletter will include a short video with some helpful hints and actions you can implement to improve mental, spiritual, and physical wellbeing for yourself and for your clients. You will be among the first to hear the findings and insights from cutting-edge data, and we are providing references so you can do your own research if interested.

Within the next year you can look forward to the following topics being covered:

Bariatric Surgery

Child Nutrition

Circadian Rhythms

Men and Eating Disorders

View last month’s video on Attentional Bias & Disordered Eating

About Nutrition in Recovery 3

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Nutrition and Mental Health

Nutrition and Mental Health

As a nutrition and dietetics student I developed an interest in the field of behavioral health nutrition. The idea that nutritional deficiencies or a variety of medical disorders could produce symptoms that mimicked psychiatric abnormalities [1] resonated with me early in my academic exploratations. The links between nutrition and mental health appeared to be a promising new area of investigation. In the past decade, research on the gut microbiome has documented compelling evidence that the bacteria flora in our intestines have a direct link to our brain and that these pathways are bidirectional [2]. As a registered dietitian nutritionist (RDN) working with patients with co-existing mental health conditions, I have observed an association between diet and depression. Practice experience has shown that dietary improvement can reduce some depressive symptoms [3]. Given that mental illness is a major public health problem, an emerging field known as nutritional psychiatry has received increased attention [4].

There are established links between depression and chronic diseases such as obesity [5], metabolic syndrome [6], and type 2 diabetes [7]. There are also associations between depressive symptoms and inflammatory bowel disease [8], as well as disordered eating [9]. Recent evidence suggests that altering the composition of the gut microbiome can lead to depressive-like behavior in animal models [10]. Because the human microbiome is highly influenced by foods that we eat, there may be an opportunity to improve depressive-like symptoms through dietary interventions. Randomized controlled human trials have shown that nutrition interventions can provide alternative or adjunct treatment for depression in common conditions such as obesity and type 2 diabetes [11]. The most common dietary recommendation is a Mediterranean-style diet with early trials showing a reduction in depressive symptoms [12,13]. Given the likelihood that nutrition can improve some depression-related symptoms, targeted dietary interventions should be considered a public health priority.


  1. Pollak, J., Levy, S., and Breitholz, T., Screening for medical and neurodevelopmental disorders for the professional counselor. Journal of Counseling & Development, 1999. 77(3): p. 35-358.
  2. Evrensel, A., and Ceylan, M.E., The gut-brain axis: the missing link in depression. Clinical Psychopharmacology and Neuroscience, 2015. 13(3): p. 239-244.
  3. Li, Y., et al., Dietary patterns and depression risk: a meta-analysis. Psychiatry Research, 2017. 253: p. 373-382.
  4. Marx, W., et al., Nutritional psychiatry: the present state of the evidence. Proceedings of the Nutrition Society, 2017. doi:10.1017/S0029665117002026
  5. Garcia-Toro, M., et al., Obesity, metabolic syndrome and Mediterranean diet: impact on depression outcome. Journal of Affective Disorders, 2016. 194: p. 105-108.
  6. Ohmori, Y, et al., Associations between depression and unhealthy behaviors related to metabolic syndrome: a cross sectional study. Asia Pacific Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 2017. 26(1): p. 130-140.
  7. Dipnall, J.F., et al., The association between dietary patterns, diabetes and depression. Journal of Affective Disorders, 2015. 174: p. 215-224.
  8. Bhandari, S., et al., Association of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and depressive symptoms in the Unites States population and independent predictors of depressive symptoms in an IBD population: a NHANES study. Gut and Liver, 2017.
  9. Kim, O. et al., Binge eating disorder and depressive symptoms among females of child-bearing age: the Korea Nurses Health Study. BMC Psychiatry, 2018. 18:13.
  10. Wong, M-L., et al., Inflammasome signaling affects anxiety- and depressive-like behavior and gut microbiome composition. Molecular Psychiatry, 2016. 21: p. 797-805.
  11. O’Neil, A., et al., A randomized, controlled trial of a dietary intervention for adults with major depression (the “SMILES” trial): study protocol. BMC Psychiatry, 2013. 13:114.
  12. Parletta, N., et al., A Mediterranean-style dietary intervention supplemented with fish oil improves diet quality and mental health in people with depression: a randomized controlled trial (HELFIMED). Nutritional Neuroscience, 2017. doi:10.1080/1028415X.2017.1411320
  13. Sanchez-Villegas, A., et al., Mediterranean dietary pattern and depression: the PREDIMED randomized trial. BMC Medicine, 2013. 11:208


Nutrition and Mental Health

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Food Politics Video

Nutrition in Recovery is thrilled to announce our new monthly newsletter! Get the latest information on Nutrition for Addiction! Check out our latest video on Food Politics!

Nutrition in Recovery is a group practice of Registered Dietitian Nutritionists and other health professionals who specialize in the treatment of addictions, eating disorders, body image, mental health, as well as general wellness.

We send out a monthly Newsletter summarizing the latest research linking nutrition and mental health. Each newsletter will include a short video with some helpful hints and actions you can implement to improve mental, spiritual, and physical wellbeing for yourself and for your clients. You will be among the first to hear the findings and insights from cutting-edge data, and we are providing references so you can do your own research if interested.

Within the next year you can look forward to the following topics being covered:

Alcoholic Liver Disease

Attentional Bias

Vaping (E-cig)

Bariatric Surgery

Child Nutrition

Circadian Rhythms

Men and Eating Disorders

View last month’s video on Night Eating Syndrome

Nutrition in Recovery

Please SIGN UP HERE so you will not miss out on this revolutionary information!

Do you know someone who might be interested in the link between nutrition and mental health or any of the topics mentioned above? Please forward this to them so they can join us and don’t keep us a secret!

Thank you for all your support as we embark on the journey of improving the health and wellbeing of our clients and their loved ones.

Have thoughts about Food Politics? Reach out to us, we would love to hear your thoughts!


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FNCE 2017 Reflection

FNCE 2017 Thoughts and Recap

I have attended the Food and Nutrition Conference and Expo for the past several years. Traditionally I have attended as a representative of Dietitians for Professional Integrity, which is an advocacy group we formed back in 2013, to promote responsible and ethical sponsorship within the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. In 2016 I wrote a recap which highlights concerns around industry-sponsored continuing professional education (CPE) units for registered dietitian nutritionists (RDNs).  FNCE 2017 was a celebration of 100 years and this theme was certainly central at the event.

I was not planning to attend this year but was alerted that I had won an award, so felt an obligation to show up! My award was for “Excellence in Practice” for Addictions and was presented by the Behavioral Health Nutrition Dietetic Practice Group. The award was presented at a breakfast at 6:30am Monday morning. There was also awards given to an RDN for excellence in practice in eating disorders, mental health, and intellectual and developmental disabilities. We all had a few minutes to give a speech and received little plaques. It’s always great to be recognized for accomplishments.

On Monday I went to a session called “Food Fraud” which was about deception in our food supply. Fake honey, mislabeled seafood etc. The focus was on seafood since there is much fraud happening globally. There is a website with more info. On Monday I spent an hour wondering the expo floor. It has improved from previous years, but of course Monsanto and The Sugar Association were present. It didn’t upset me like it has in the past, and I did not take photos since it is no surprise to anyone that these companies are here. Monday afternoon I attended a talk called “Intolerance vs. Avoidance” which discussed the intersection between food allergies and eating disorders. A certified eating disorder registered dietitian discussed common concerns around food allergies with restrictive patients and those with “orthorexia nervosa” while an MD gave some background on testing for food allergies.

Tuesday I went to talk on “Nutritional Genomics” where the speakers summarized the latest advances in the intersection between genetics and nutrition. They discussed a website called 23 and Me where one can send in a spit sample to get personalized nutrition information. Unfortunately, the recommendations are pretty generic, but I am still curious and will request a kit! The closing keynote was a physicist (Dr. Michio Kaku) who discussed “The Future of the Mind” where he outlined current advances that could revolutionize healthcare. I was most impressed by the contact lens with a screen on it. Digitized healthcare definitely sounds intriguing, but much of what he described seems like a potential disaster for mental and spiritual health. Overall, my experience for FNCE 2017 was different this year. I was not at the event as an undercover journalist. Just another RDN trying to make a difference in people’s lives…


FNCE 2017

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