How Smoking Helps in Weight Management

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Smoking is usually considered a health deteriorating agent by almost everybody. Even tobacco users complain about the adverse effects of smoking, however, in this article we look at how smoking helps in weight management.

Smoking – and, in particular, the nicotine in the tobacco smoke – is an appetite suppressant. This has been known for centuries, even from the pre – Columbus era. Tobacco companies from the early 1920s used this fact to connect with consumers because smoking helps with weight management.

According to a study in the 2011 issue of the Physiology & Behavior journal, is one of the many leading journals stating that people find it difficult to quit smoking because of the looming weight gain as a major barrier, second only to addiction.

Smoking and weight management is a complex situation. Nicotine acts as a stimulant as well as an appetite suppressant, and the act of smoking triggers behavior modification that prompts smokers to eat less. Smoking also might make food less tasty for some smokers, further leading to appetite loss. As an appetite suppressant, nicotine appears to act on a part of the brain called hypothalamus, at least in mice, as revealed in a study by Yale researchers published in June 10, 2011, issue of Journal Science.

Researchers found a receptor on the surface of some brain cells that nicotine binds to, the study says. When they activated this receptor in mice, the mice ate less. Researchers are hoping this carries on to human beings as well. A treatment based on these findings could dispel smoker’s common fear that quitting will bring weight gain and could potentially help the weight loss efforts of non – smokers.

No respectable doctor would recommend smoking for weight control, given the toxic baggage accompanying cigarettes. This recent study, however, does offer an inkling of hope for a safe diet drug to help obese people control their appetites.

Causes of weight gain when quitting smoking can be attributed to the following:

Eating More Food

Many smokers find their eating habits change when they quit cigarettes. Some people experience increased hunger as a withdrawal symptom, but research suggests their eating patterns eventually return to normal

Effect of Nicotine

Nicotine is the addictive substance in tobacco that causes smokers to continue their habit, although nicotine isn’t thought to cause cancer, it does speed up the body’s food processing system, the metabolism. After many years of smoking, smokers tend to weigh less than non – smokers.

In case you put on weight after quitting smoking, a few extra kilograms are a much lower risk compared to the risk of heavy smoking. You would have to have a drastic weight gain of over 40 kilograms above your recommended weight to equal the risk of heart disease posed by smoking.

Do not think that taking up smoking again will mean you will shed the weight – sometimes it doesn’t. Concentrate on improving your diet and increasing your physical activity. Seeing your doctor or dietician will set you on the right path. Some of the leading tobacco companies in the United States like the Florida Tobacco Shop, promotes little cigars which will not be addictive if smoked moderately and also will help sustain your weight management efforts.