Cigarettes are seen as a social activity — but they have a number of harmful chemicals that affect almost every organ in the body. We previously published an article entitled Manage Your Cholesterol, Naturally, which mentions that smoking cigarettes damages your blood vessels and increases your risk of high cholesterol. Commonly known health risks include cancer, diabetes, and lung disease. But some lesser-known ones are tuberculosis, some eye diseases, and rheumatoid arthritis.
As you can see smoking is a terrible habit for your health. If you’ve decided you want to stop smoking, below are a few tips to help you succeed:
Know your triggers
Triggers fall under four categories, and they differ per person. Emotional triggers happen in situations where you smoke to enhance your good mood or escape a bad mood. Pattern triggers are situations you connect with smoking, such as drinking alcohol. Social triggers are occasions that typically include other people who also smoke, like going to a bar with fellow smoker friends. Finally, withdrawal triggers show when you’re trying to quit smoking — such as craving the taste of cigarettes. After identifying your triggers, come up with a plan to get through them without smoking. For instance, you can have snacks while drinking alcohol so you’re keeping your mouth busy and distracted, rather than smoking.
Exercise can distract you from your cravings and reduce their intensity. Even short bursts of physical activity are helpful, according to NCBI. However, this will be more effective if you yourself want to exercise, rather than having someone tell you what to do. The higher your sense of autonomy is when deciding to exercise, the more engaged you’ll feel. Aside from that, you’ll also be able to tailor your exercise according to the intensity you want — since people have different physical activity levels at which they feel that the cravings and withdrawal symptoms are being relieved.
To make quitting smoking easier, some people find alternatives to it. Fortunately, there are products that have nicotine, but without the many other toxins found in cigarettes. One such alternative is a nicotine pouch. Prilla explains that these are tobacco-free products that come in different types, flavors, and nicotine strengths. To use them, you simply roll the pouch and tuck it underneath your top lip, where it releases the flavor and nicotine. If you want to try something natural, fresh lime juice flavor is an option. In fact, there are several flavors that will suit any preference.
Consider your diet
It might surprise you to know that the food and drink you consume can actually make cigarettes taste better or worse. Monday Campaigns gives tips on what to add to your diet. For instance, milk, fruits, and vegetables make cigarettes taste bad — and they also keep you healthy in the process. Raw carrots, celery, and anything crunchy and satisfying will help stave off cravings by giving your mouth something to do. Drinking more tea than coffee is also useful since it weakens the dopamine neurotransmitter, which is released when you smoke. Some things to watch your intake of are meat, fizzy drinks, and alcohol since they make cigarettes taste better.
Smoking is one of the most difficult addictions to overcome. But making an effort to resist cravings is already a step closer to quitting.