How Can You Quit Smoking And Not Gain Weight As Well?

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One concern of many who try to quit smoking is the?possibility of weight gain. In truth, it does happen. Not to everyone,?but it does happen. On the other hand, some people actually lose weight?when they quit smoking and others stay the same. In addition, those who?do gain weight often lose it again in a few months after giving up?smoking.

The reasons for weight gain after smoking cessation are varied.?For some, smoking actually reduces the appetite. For others, food actually tastes better because their sense of taste has returned. Yet others are in the habit of?smoking after a meal. Since they can?t smoke, they choose a second helping?over a cigarette. For these people eating more than they did while smoking is the?cause of the weight gain.

There are also physical changes that occur to the body from smoking. Smoking does increase a person?s metabolic rate, which causes calories to burn more quickly. In addition, the body doesn?t digest food properly and insulin levels are depressed,?which can reduce weight gain. In fact, a heavy smoker can burn up to 200 calories?per day from the increased metabolism of smoking.

Make Smoking Your First Priority

Research into the connection between weight gain and smoking cessation has shown?that it is best to make smoking your first priority, then, once this is successfully?managed, you can look at losing weight if necessary. Trying to quit smoking can be?stressful as it is, you don?t need to stress yourself out more by?worrying about weight gain. Combining both will only serve to stress you?more.

Monitor Your Food Intake
Since smoking does increase your metabolic rate, you might want to make a few changes in your diet to compensate for the lack of metabolism. This may not always be?necessary. In fact, you may be able to continue your normal diet without?gaining weight. But, if you are really concerned about the possibility?of gaining weight, you can cut back on a few simple things ? such as?butter ? to reduce your caloric intake.

Some ?food? for thought ? eliminating the following foods from?your diet will help you ?make up? those extra 200 calories that may not?be getting burned now that you have quit smoking:

1 hot dog and roll = 250 calories
2 frozen waffles = 240 calories
20 potato chips = 220 calories
2 light beers = 220 calories
2 oz of cheddar cheese = 220 calories
4 chocolate sandwich cookies = 213 calories
1 small order of McDonald?s fries = 210 calories
? cup of macaroni and cheese = 205 calories
2 tablespoons of butter = 200 calories
Increase Activity
Even a small amount of added activity can help compensate for the calories?that may be no longer burned off when quitting smoking. Now that you have quit smoking, your energy levels should be higher, which should make it easier for you to engage in physical activity. For example, a brisk 45 minute walk will burn 200?calories, as will 30 minutes of swimming laps. In addition, engaging in?these activities can help keep your mind off cravings by distracting you?from smoking and helping reduce stress and tension. In fact, your brain?releases endorphins when you exercise, which helps make you feel better,?and increases your metabolism, which helps you burn calories faster and?more efficiently.

Satisfy the Oral Fixation

For many smokers, the primary gratification of smoking is to satisfy the oral?fixation. Don?t substitute food for cigarettes to fulfill this desire.?Wait to eat until after the urge to smoke subsides. For starters, eating?every time you want a cigarette can certainly lead to weight gain!?Secondly, you don?t want to substitute food for cigarettes, and eating?when you have a craving will ?train? your body to rely on food the same?way it did cigarettes. Instead, chew a piece of gum.

Drink Fluids
Drinking lots of water has two benefits. First, it makes you feel full, which?will make you less likely to overeat. Second, it helps flush out the?toxins in your body ? namely nicotine. If you absolutely must have?something with flavor, try to avoid soft drinks. Instead, keep club soda?and vegetable juices on hand.