It’s a well-known fact that smoking increases metabolism, making it almost impossible to quit this habit without gaining at least some extra weight. Nicotine is one of the most powerful appetite suppressants, that’s why when you get less of it, your appetite increases considerably. All foods and drinks seem much tastier than before as your smell and taste get back to normal. All these new ‘superpowers’ lead to you eating more sweet and fatty foods, which taste more delicious than anything you’ve ever eaten before. And without the socially smoothing act of smoking, we turn to all kinds of snacks, which become an escape for anxious people. So how do you avoid all of this? Here are 7 tips to boost your metabolism when quitting smoking.
Don’t be afraid to eat more often than you are used to – this is exactly what your body needs right now! Eating five times a day will keep your metabolism in check, making you less edgy and more content throughout the day. Always start your day with a hearty breakfast as studies show that people who eat breakfasts consume fewer calories during the day. The main rule here is: the more often you eat, the smaller your meals should be.
Control how much you eat
When your taste buds get back to normal without the cigarette tar clogging them, food will naturally taste more delicious. It is easy to start overeating and putting on weight, that’s why you should carefully consider how much you eat. Control the portions of your meals and create a balanced diet that will get you all the vitamins and minerals you need, and you’ll be okay! It’s best not to stress your body with ‘crash dieting’ as it could easily ruin your health.
Spice up your meals
Spicy foods are known to increase metabolism, so it can be a good idea to add some spicy meals to your diet. The capsaicin compound found in spices can boost your metabolism for a short while, having an effect similar to that of nicotine. It also stimulates the nerves in mouth and lips, making it much easier to survive without smoking.
Drink a lot
Staying hydrated is one of the main tricks that will keep you both healthy and fit. Drinking water helps you feel full, which makes you eat less as a result. Experts recommend quitters to drink about 8 glasses of water a day, which is an average amount of water for any healthy person. Stay away from sodas and sweet drinks as they contain lots of sugar, which will lead to weight gain instead of weight loss.
Keep your hands busy
Sometimes the urge to grab a cigarette can be unbearable, that’s why you need to keep your hands busy with something else. Carry a bottle of water with you all the time – this way you will kill two birds with one stone. You can also try knitting or do something with your nails more often than you usually do. Learning to play a musical instrument is yet another way to take your mind off smoking and do something fun.
Consume plenty of protein
Protein-rich foods can considerably boost your metabolism in no time. Just be careful and avoid fatty foods that are often rich in protein. Foods like deli meats will do you more harm than good, but products like eggs, lean beef, oats, tuna, almonds, Greek yoghurt, and broccoli are packed with nutrients and high-quality protein. Plan your diet carefully!
Move as much as you can
As simple as it sounds, moving is the key to staying healthy and fit when quitting smoking. It is one of the easiest ways to boost your metabolism and to burn calories, all while your body gets stronger with each passing day. You don’t have to hit the gym immediately, you can just start walking more in the mornings and evenings or running with your friends. Taking up yoga is also a good way to calm both your body and mind.