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How can women avoid weight gain after they quit smoking?

Howard J. Shaffer, PhD
Addiction Medicine
About half of female smokers say they are afraid they will gain weight if they stop smoking. Although the usual advice is to exercise or count calories while kicking the habit, this might be impractical because both are emotionally draining tasks, and concentrating on dieting could mean that the effort to stop smoking will fail. A preliminary study suggests that it might be more productive to help women learn to accept any weight gain as a reasonable trade-off for the improved health that comes from kicking the habit. If you're worried about weight gain, you can always give yourself a break while you're quitting and then go on a diet after you've successfully stopped smoking.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.