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Is Weight Gain a Sure Thing After Quitting Smoking?

Weight gain after quitting smoking is not a sure thing. There are some steps you can take to reduce weight gain (good diet, exercise). Remember, no smoking cessation program has ever been developed that prevents weight gain among quitters. Beware of smoking cessation programs that promise quitting smoking without weight gain! Often these promises are made by those who place large ads in newspapers. They may promise that one session of hypnosis will “cure” you of smoking, without withdrawal symptoms or weight gain. These are promises that they cannot keep.

Remember: “If it seems too good to be true, it probably is.”

As stated before, the average smoker gains between 4 to 10 pounds after quitting smoking. But, with this gain, most ex-smokers return to the weight that they would have been if they never smoked. This weight gain is small compared to the health benefits of quitting smoking. Smoking does much more harm to your health and to your looks than does the added weight. The stress on your heart of smoking one pack of cigarettes per day is equal to being 90 pounds overweight! And remember that quitting smoking decreases your risks of lung cancer, other cancers, heart attack, stroke, and lung problems. For most people, smoking is far more dangerous to your health than is extra weight. And think about how much more attractive you can look as a nonsmoker. Your teeth are whiter, your skin is healthier, and you don’t smell of smoke. Today, someone with a cigarette hanging out of his or her mouth is not considered good looking.

Effects of Quitting Smoking and Weight Gain

As stated before, weight gain after quitting smoking is likely, but not a sure thing. About 80% of people who quit smoking gain weight at first and most lose weight over time with no special action. But there are things that can be done to reduce the chances of gaining weight after quitting smoking. Weight gain occurs when people take in more calories than they use. Weight is controlled best when calories are reduced and metabolism is increased. Calories can be reduced with a proper diet. Metabolism can be increased with regular exercise. But remember it is very important to talk to your doctor before making any major changes in diet or exercise.

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