Weight Control and Smoking Cessation (cont.)

Consider getting professional advice about weight control

Reader Stories

You may find it easier to control your weight with the help of a health professional. Ask your health care provider if there is a weight-management program in your area. Also, consider speaking with a registered dietitian, nutritionist, personal trainer, or exercise professional about becoming physically active and adopting a healthy eating plan. You may need to contact your health insurer to make sure weight-management services are covered by your plan.

Will weight gain hurt my health?

Although gaining weight is not desired after you stop smoking, keep in mind that the overall health benefits of quitting outweigh the health risks of weight gain.

Health Risks of Smoking

  • Cancer. Smoking greatly increases the risk of lung cancer, the leading cause of cancer death in the United States. Smoking is also linked to cancer of the esophagus, larynx, kidney, pancreas, and cervix.
  • Other health problems. Smoking increases the risk of lung disease and heart disease. In pregnant women, smoking is linked to premature birth, babies with low birth weight, and delivery complications

By quitting smoking, you are taking a big step to improve your health. Instead of worrying about weight gain, focus on quitting. Once you are tobacco-free, you can work toward having a healthy weight for life by becoming more physically active and choosing healthier foods.

SOURCE: Weight-control Information Network, National Institutes of Health. You Can Control Your Weight as You Quit Smoking.

Last Editorial Review: 2/28/2010

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Weight Control and Smoking Cessation - Avoiding Weight Gain Question: Please provide tips and suggestions for avoiding weight gain while trying to quit smoking.
Weight Control and Smoking Cessation - Physical Activity Question: What types of physical activity worked for you while trying to quit smoking?
Weight Control and Smoking Cessation - Snacking and Alcohol Question: Discuss your desire for snacks and alcohol while trying to quit smoking. Did you acquire other unhealthy habits?
Weight Control and Smoking Cessation - Medications Question: What medications or supplements helped with weight control and/or helped you quit smoking?
Weight Control and Smoking Cessation - Getting Help Question: Besides a doctor, did another professional help you with weight control and smoking cessation? Please share your story.