Most smokers are aware of the risks of smoking, which is why many people attempt to quit. However, as pointed out by the scientific journal Drug and Alcohol Dependence, smoking cessation comes with multiple problems that may deter quit attempts. One issue many former smokers face is weight gain. Quitting smoking deprives users of a source of pleasure. Many often resort to food high in fat and sugar as a coping mechanism. As a result, ex-smokers gain as much as 8-11 pounds on average within 3-6 months of quitting.
With these concerns over weight, smokers who quit risk relapse or other health issues related to excess body weight. It can be challenging to handle the after-effects of smoking. But it’s not impossible to quit successfully to improve your health. Here, we list four tips on managing your body after you quit cigarettes.
4 Tips to Manage Your Body After You Quit Cigarettes
1. Don’t eat less, build healthier eating habits
You suppress your appetite when you smoke cigarettes. This is why most people who quit smoking tend to be hungrier— often leading to them snacking more to compensate. Rather than force yourself to go on a diet and eat less. Choose healthier food options to help you stay full for longer. Our post “How To Lose Weight Fast Healthy Versus Fast” suggests avoiding starchy foods like potatoes, corn, and peas. Instead, opt for green vegetables like celery and broccoli and fruits like strawberries and oranges to satisfy hunger pains.
You can also eat whole-grain crackers or oatmeal as a better alternative to unhealthy snacks. This allows you to lose weight without starving yourself, helping you maintain weight loss for the long term.
2. Try nicotine replacement therapy to handle withdrawal
When you quit smoking, your body undergoes drastic changes that not only lead to weight gain. But also cravings and feelings of restlessness. It can be challenging to face these uncomfortable symptoms. When you’re already trying to watch your weight, so consider trying nicotine replacement therapy (NRT). NRT products like nicotine pouches can reduce withdrawal effects, making it easier to manage yourself.
The On! nicotine pouches available on Prilla are 100% tobacco-free, so they won’t stain your teeth or produce an unpleasant smoke odor, and they are made with high-quality ingredients. Furthermore, these are sold online in most US states. Where you can order and receive them in bulk to save more. For over-the-counter options, the Nicotrol inhaler is available in most pharmacies, allowing you to relieve cravings through the mouth and suppress oral cravings. By curbing your withdrawal symptoms with NRT, you can make it easier to handle daily activities, including weight management.
3. Boost metabolic rate through exercise
Aside from suppressing hunger, smoking can boost your metabolism and keep weight off. With quitting, exercise is a smokeless way to increase your metabolic rate. Here are some ways you can boost your metabolism:
Maintain daily activity – While you don’t have to exercise every day, consistent inactivity is detrimental to your metabolism. Make sure to take time to get up and a few minutes per hour.
Engage in HIIT and strength training. Health Digest on the best exercise highlights how high-interval training (HIIT) and weight training are optimal for improving body composition and metabolism. While HIIT burns more calories, lifting weights can build lean mass, which uses more energy even during rest.
Exercise in the morning or evening – For the best weight loss, research recommends exercising before breakfast. However, working out in the evening may be better for those aiming to gain strength and muscle.
4. Find support and build a self-help kit
Before you quit smoking, seek support from your family and friends to help you stay on track with your goals. Finding a buddy you can engage with for nonfood-related activities, like walking or playing sports is best. You can also find support through a healthcare provider or online means. Allowing you to connect with people facing similar challenges and learn practical ways to manage cravings. It also helps to build a self-help kit to overcome boredom, which is a big trigger for smoking and eating. This kit can include sugarless gum, a game to keep your hands busy. Or walking plans to help you stay distracted.
A special thanks to one of our writers, James Curtis for this article.