My "Gaining Weight while Quitting Smoking Story"
When I quit smoking 7 years ago (6th Jan 2007) I put on 10kg. I made the mistake of replacing my cigarettes with peanut M & M's and apricot chocolate balls. At times my eating was so bad it bordered on binge eating.
Giving up smoking is the hardest thing you will ever do so I know you don't want to think about gaining weight. The reality is that you will gain weight.
How much you gain is up to you.
While I was munching my way through endless bags of sweets while congratulating myself for giving up smoking I didn't stop to think about gaining weight or how hard it was going to be to lose the weight.
After quitting smoking your body goes through it's own detox. One minute you are putting hundreds of chemicals into your system via the lungs and the next minute you take them all away and your body is going to react to that. Immediately it wants to heal itself!
This is the time when you should help your body become healthy by undertaking further detoxification either by purchasing a commercial detox system from the pharmacy or health food store or by going through a natural process recommended by a naturopath. This is also the time when you should incorporate a healthy diet into your lifestyle. By doing this you really start to feel the health benefits of giving up smoking in more ways than one.
I do believe that if I had been more sensible I would only have gained the normal 3-5kg of weight that is expected when someone quits smoking.
It is easier to lose a few kilos rather than ten!
There are some great books around on the topic of detox and I picked up a couple from the library when I took on the task of losing the 10kg. I didn't join a gym or go on any fancy diets I just used common sense.
Take in less calories (kilojoules) and move your body around which means - YES! You must exercise!
I prepared containers of healthy snacks and ate those during the day when I really wanted a chocolate treat. For my meals I removed the potatoes and ate plain protein (a piece of fish, chicken, lamb or beef) with the vegies or the salad. I am not saying I gave up carbs but I did limit them which sometimes has the effect of shocking your system into losing the initial couple of kilos to start you off. Click on this link Tips for Losing Weight to get more info.
I am a self-confessed chocaholic and anyone who has a sweet tooth will tell you that if sweets are your passion then gaining weight is inevitable and your weight gain will end up sitting around the middle of your body.
I knew that realistically I would never be able to go through life denying myself the things that I love so I just made sure that I could have a little of what I love everyday. These days we are lucky that we have treats packaged in snack size portions all neatly individually wrapped and that means it is easier to allow yourself one treat. Obviously sitting down with a block of chocolate or putting a packet of biscuits on the table is out.
When the nicotine monster is hammering away inside your head it is very hard to deny yourself a treat when you are already denying yourself a cigarette.
This is why it is important to tackle the quitting with the knowledge that gaining weight is inevitable, but it can be controlled and then when you have finally got through the anxiety of giving up smoking hopefully gaining weight is only a couple of kilos and you will have made life a little bit easier for yourself.