Stress Management and Weight Control When Quitting SmokingTwo of the most common issues ex-smokers deal with as a result of smoking cessation involve learning how to manage stress smoke-free, and how to avoid the dreaded weight gain.
Smokers have a long history of dealing with stress by lighting up. Over the years we learn to block difficult emotions and encounters out by hiding behind a wall of smoke, and when we quit, managing stress is often very uncomfortable initially.
While they often do go hand-in-hand, weight gain when you quit smoking is not a given. Temporary changes in metabolism can cause a small upward shift on the scale of 5 to 8 pounds, but as long as you are eating as you were before, this weight should fall back off within weeks. The trick is in keeping your eating habits under control when you quit, because for most of us, food is a common substitute for the hand-to-mouth action of smoking that we are missing.
Today's lesson will give you tips on how to manage these challenges, along with comments from others who have found creative ways to keep their weight under control while in the process of quitting tobacco.
Don't let temporary discomforts associated with recovery from nicotine addiction throw you off-balance. Better days are ahead, and they're not far off.
Managing Stress Smoke-Free10 Tips to Help You Cope With Stress Smoke-Free
Learning how to cope with stress without a cigarette in hand is difficult when we first quit smoking. But with a few tools and some practice, you'll find it's less challenging than you might have expected.
Deep Breathing for Nicotine Withdrawal
Cravings to smoke usually come on fast and with force. They start off strong and fade in intensity within 3 to 5 minutes. Don't panic when you're hit with an intense urge to smoke. Take a few moments to concentrate on your breathing, and you'll be able to weather the craving successfully.
Tips to Use Your Breath to Manage Stress
From Smoking Cessation Forum member, Leslie: "Breathing properly is an absolutely crucial tool in the first days and weeks of smoking cessation. I recently read a forum member's post describing how, in order to get the most nicotine out of a sickorette, we breathe more deeply than we do otherwise. This may explain in part some of the sense we get as smokers that we are 'relaxed' when smoking."
Avoiding Weight Gain When You Quit SmokingMinimizing Quit-Related Weight Gain
While a small gain is normal, excessive weight gain when you quit smoking can create new health problems and erode your determination to stay off cigarettes. Learn what you can do to keep your weight under control as you go through the process of recovery from nicotine addiction.
The Effects of Smoking on Metabolism
Cigarette smoking increases a person's metabolic rate in part by forcing the heart to beat faster. When a cigarette is inhaled, the smoker's heart may beat 10 to 20 times more per minute for a period of time. This causes extra stress on the heart and may play a role in heart disease, the most common cause of smoking-related death.
Smoking Cessation and Weight Gain FAQ's
Why do people gain weight when they quit smoking? Will weight gain hurt my health? Why do I want to snack so much? Will quit smoking aids help me gain less weight? What else can I do to minimize weight gain?
Smoking Cessation and Weight Loss -- Personal StoriesWeight Loss at Six Months Smoke Free - Maia's Story
From Maia: "Quitting smoking will create such amazing change in the rest of your life. It is not always an easy path, but it is SO worth it. I celebrated my 6 month milestone yesterday, and I can promise that I will NEVER go back to smoking."
A View on Quitting and Weight Gain - Dee's Story
From Dee: "I hope to make this message one that will inspire someone to stay focused on their quit program in the face of weight gain. I want to tell you my story of the journey of my last two smoke-free years, and I hope that when I am done, anyone thinking they need to smoke to be thin will find the strength, hope and belief to stay the course of smoking cessation."