12% of Australians still smoke, 77 years after the first evidence was confirmed of the harms associated with cigarettes smoking ( WHO data on the current world smoking statistics has just been published)

If one of your New Year's Resolutions was to quit smoking, there is considerable comprehensive information, advice and support available to you on the free iCanQuit website. Information on strategies and products to help with the method that suits you, how to develop your  willpower muscle and how to stay Quit.

Many smokers are concerned about weight gain when they quit smoking, forgetting the positive benefits from quitting ( saving money, improving fitness, reducing coronary heart disease risk, reducing the risk of many cancers and stroke). Weight gain may occur because there are changes to metabolism affecting the way your body stores and uses fat, a slowing of metabolism, reversal of the appetite-reducing effects of nicotine ( increasing hunger ) and smoking can be a substitute for food, replacing the 'high" of smoking with the enjoyable effects of food, especially those high in fat and sugar, which activate the brain's reward centre in a similar way to smoking.

Some tips to reduce weight gain when quitting are:

  • Use nicotine replacement therapy or a prescribed quit smoking medication as they have a small, but noticeable effect on minimising weight gain
  • Eat a well-balanced diet containing plenty of fruit and vegetables and avoid sugar and fat containing foods
  • Minimise snacking to control nicotine cravings
  • Drink water or low calorie drinks instead of snacking
  • Do regular exercise

The online site has an online quit smoking tracking tool,  tracking how much money you are saving, setting dates to aim for if not yet quit, tracking how many cigarettes you currently smoke, keep a record of favourite pages for reference and set up support links. 

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