First of all, smoking decreases your appetite. In some ways, it replaces the need to eat. Of course, smokers still eat, but many times they will eat less so they can finish and go have a smoke. They may also snack as much as they would while they smoke. Smoking becomes a pastime for them, and they often do it instead of many things they would otherwise do. The longer a person smokes, the more it becomes an integral part of their life. They cannot live without it, and they would often rather smoke than eat.
Once they quit smoking, their body starts to return to its normal eating patterns and becomes hungrier. About 80 percent of all people who quit smoking gain several pounds within the first year of quitting smoking. That weight gain may increase to the next year as well. This is entirely normal, as regular eating patterns are resumed.
Regaining Lost Weight
While smoking, many people tend to lose weight. The smoking habit takes up a lot of their time, and as mentioned before, they spend less time eating and more time smoking. Smoking also speeds up the metabolism for a lot of people, meaning that even if they ate the same amount of food, they would be losing more weight and keeping more of what they eat off of their fat reserves.
That’s why people who have been smoking for a very long time tend to look thin and frail. They may not have much body fat left. If they their metabolism normalizes and their eating habits return. They may also be stress eating were already thin to begin with, then smoking could have a dangerous effect on their body weight.
Once they quit smoking, their metabolism normalizes and their eating habits return. They may also be stress eating as a way to cope with the withdrawal symptoms.
Quitting Causes Different Weight Gains
Not everyone is going to gain weight at the same rate as everyone else when they quit smoking. People who are already overweight who quit smoking will tend to gain weight faster than average-sized people. Also, women tend to gain weight faster than men when they quit smoking.
It helps to have this information if you want to avoid unnecessary or unhealthy weight gain. But keep in mind that gaining a few pounds or even more is much safer for your overall health than continuing to smoke. If you are worried about how quitting smoking will affect your weight (and many people are, as they may continue smoking to keep their figure), then there are ways to keep that weight gain under control.
Just be aware that the food cravings will be coming and that your metabolism will not be what it once was. That way, you can plan your diet accordingly and ensure that you aren’t gaining weight too quickly once you quit.