Weight Management

It’s true you might gain a few pounds when you first quit smoking. Many people replace cigarettes with food and your metabolism will slow down a little without nicotine. But in the long run you’ll feel so much better without cigarettes so try to stay focused on quitting and then manage any weight gain when you’re feeling strong.

To prevent the pounds from piling up, try these activities instead of eating or smoking:

  • Do something physical. Take a walk or go for a run – do anything active.

    Many smokers claim they smoke because smoking is the best stress reliever they know of. Once they quit, they turn to food, especially comfort food, to fill that hole in their stress relief approach. However, did you know that exercise is a natural stress and anxiety reliever because it releases endorphins into your bloodstream? Endorphins naturally reduce your anxiety levels and therefore help wash away the stress.

  • Drink (cold) water instead of eating food.

    Drinking water is a great trick to help you get through a craving, as drinking water has a natural calming effect on people. Drinking water can also help you feel more full, so you can avoid overeating. And finally, drinking iced water is a natural way to help burn calories, as your body needs to find a way to heat back up from the drop in temperature the cold water provides.

  • Brush your teeth, chew gum, or have a mint.

    Although many consider it a myth, cinnamon flavoured items seem to have a great effect on cravings. The next time you feel one coming on, try something with a strong cinnamon flavour to help you bat away the temptation.

  • Chew a toothpick or cinnamon stick.

    As is mentioned above, the flavour of cinnamon has a profound effect on those who are craving a cigarette. Chewing on something also gives you the sensation of having something in your mouth, which can help reduce the need to have a cigarette.

  • Keep your hands busy.

    Finding a substitute like a stress ball, a pen, or a straw can work wonders in helping to reduce your cravings. Like the above, the sensation of having something in your hands takes away the sensation of needing to have a cigarette in your hands.

  • Practice deep breathing.

    Taking a few slow, deep breaths can make a huge difference in tackling your cravings to smoke. Inhale through your nose and exhale through your mouth and let the cravings wash away. This will help calm you down, as well as clear your mind and help you realize that you don't need a cigarette after all!

Activity

If you would like help with your diet, go to MyHR to check out Nutritional Support services.