Ella Quit Smoking, Gained Weight and Lives to Tell About It

Ella shares her experience with smoking cessation. When someone succeeds even with a few set backs thrown in, it is great inspiration for others who haven’t quite taken the plunge.

A point of intererst here. I always ask my smokers what their brand is, just to educate myself and look for trends. I find that the majority are Marlboro smokers. Does anyone have an idea why Marlboro is such a popular choice?

Ella writes to metabolism.com with her story:

Yes, thanks to everyone. It was a relief to read all of the posts. I quit one year ago this last 7/7, and I am one of the unlucky ones–from 138 to the 150s. I smoked for 15 yrs and am 32. I run 4-5 miles/week, lift weights and other machines at the gym at least 5 times a week. I was also very active, with boxing, aerobics and other stuff for 5 years prior to quitting. It’s been difficult to deal with 30 pounds. But I am also taking the advice of some of the other posts and gonna come clean about my caloric intake and my ALCOHOL consumption (hey–misery loves company–a smoke in one hand and a drink in the other and now, without one, well keep pouring ….) Anyway, I have taken a month off the hooch pledge and am back on a diet. I am also going to up my 45 minutes at the gym to at least a full hour. Hopefully I will make a dent before the end of the summer.

Yes, thanks to everyone. It was a relief to read all of the posts. I quit one year ago this last 7/7, and I am one of the unlucky ones–from 138 to the 150s. I smoked for 15 yrs and am 32. I run 4-5 miles/week, lift weights and other machines at the gym at least 5 times a week. I was also very active, with boxing, aerobics and other stuff for 5 years prior to quitting. It’s been difficult to deal with 30 pounds. But I am also taking the advice of some of the other posts and gonna come clean about my caloric intake and my ALCOHOL consumption (hey–misery loves company–a smoke in one hand and a drink in the other and now, without one, well keep pouring ….) Anyway, I have taken a month off the hooch pledge and am back on a diet. I am also going to up my 45 minutes at the gym to at least a full hour. Hopefully I will make a dent before the end of the summer.
emdiaz@wm.edu
Ella

Patricia Offers Insight into Smoking and Metabolism

Patricia offers this blog about her experience with stopping smoking and weight gain. Patricia writes:

Today I googled “smoking and metabolism”… and here I am…. Like most of you, I quit smoking 4 months ago and gained 20 lbs… Prior to quitting I worked out daily for over 3 years burning on average 700 calories during each workout. Since I quit smoking I bumped my cardio up to 50 minutes from 15 and eat healthier/less calories than ever before, which is always under 1200. I count each calorie and follow it faithfully on an app on my iphone. Since January, I have lost about 8 of that 20 gained. I kill myself in the gym and see very little results. I will never go back to smoking, obviously the benefits far outweigh the side effects of quitting, however I will have to agree that Linda’s calories in/calories out theory, which is EXACTLY what I thought when I quit, has not held true for me either…. It is frustrating, depressing and discouraging. I will continue to work just as hard every day and I am glad to know that I am not alone in this fight, but I would love to know WHY. I have been 2 my Dr. twice and he has run the gamut of tests on me. He is baffled as well and attirbutes this issue to the fact that smking has seriously screwed up my metabolism and that it takes on average 6-12 months to see a balance return. He said to just continue doing what I’m doing and wait for my metalism to balance out. It’s hard to be patient!!! Anyway, STAY STRONG FOLKS! Keep working out and eating right. We’re BOUND to see results… WE HAVE TO! LOL! Good luck to all! Here’s to a long, healthy life!

From How Smoking Affects Metabolism, 2009/05/01 at 10:36 AM

How Smoking Affects Metabolism

I have smoked for about 25 years and recently stopped. Now I am fighting weight gain. What can I expect and what can I do to keep the weight gain to a minimum? What is it that happens to the metabolism that causes the weight to go on so fast?

Congratulations on your wise decision to stop smoking. More Americans die from smoking-related diseases than from AIDS, drug abuse, car accidents and murder – combined. You have taken a big step towards better health for yourself as well as for those around you.

Nicotine, one of the components of cigarette smoke, increases energy expenditure by stimulating the central nervous system. Once this drug is removed from a person’s system, energy expenditure returns to normal. This difference is not very significant and the person should adjust to it in a short period of time. Smoking also appears to ease feelings of hunger. Smokers can usually overcome hunger signals by lighting up. Consequently, weight gain is often experienced soon after a person quits smoking. The average weight gain for people who quit smoking is less than 10 pounds. Being aware of the problem will help in avoiding or minimizing the weight gain. It is often necessary to adjust eating habits and physical activity to maintain weight during and after quitting.

Smoking cessation, however, lengthens life expectancy by an average of 2-4 years and is well worth the effort. Here are some guidelines to help you avoid the weight gain:

  • Eat three balanced meals every day.
  • Choose plenty of fruits, vegetables and whole grains, avoiding high-fat and high sugar items.
  • Avoid skipping meals. It leads to hunger and a tendency to snack on high-calorie foods.
  • Keep fresh fruit and cut-up raw vegetables handy and choose them when the need for snacking arises.
  • Keep busy to keep your thoughts away from food. Choose an activity that you enjoy (except eating) and do it more often, especially if you feel the urge to smoke or eat.
  • Increase your physical activity: join a gym, walk more, use the stairs.
  • Initially, stay away from other smokers and situations that led you to smoke (or eat).
  • Join a support group.

Never let the fear of weight gain keep you from accomplishing your goal. With a little effort and determination you will succeed in achieving both goals: quit smoking and avoid putting on weight. Your health depends on it.

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