Quitting Smoking Without Binge Eating?

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  • Kyrenora
    Kyrenora Posts: 133 Member
    cecsav1 wrote: »
    I quit smoking too (you know, for like the sixth time... lol), and so far, I've done really well. The first thing I did was pick a quit date. I smoked normally right up until midnight the night before. BUT at midnight, I cut up the remaining cigarettes, threw out all ashstrays, (kept one lighter for candles), and Febreezed everything in the house.

    As you mentioned, I think it's important to find healthier habits to replace smoking. I made a list before I quit:
    Drink hot tea
    Meditate 10 min
    Go for a walk
    Watch a TED Talk
    Lotion on hands/arms/legs
    Paint nails
    Deep breathing
    10 min nap

    Also, I've (temporarily) removed some things from my life that remind me of smoking. Instead of coffee, I drink tea. I don't go to the gas station 5 blocks from my house now, because that's where I bought my cigarettes, and I haven't spent much time at my mom's because she's a smoker, and we used to sit around and drink coffee and smoke and chat.

    You may even be able to find a group on here or FB or something with whom you can check in with when you feel the need to smoke. Hope this helps!

    Deadlines have always been great for me in the past, but my husband doesn't do so well with them. First it was going to be when we got married, then when we bought the house, then when I got pregnant (that's the last time I quit, and I was able to stay quit for the duration), then he was going to quit that New Year's, then when our daughter was born, then again this New Year's. He says he really wants to stop, but he always ends up coming home with another new pack. Of course, when he has a cigarette, I'm too weak to avoid that temptation.

    Your distraction list is great! I hadn't ever even considered a nap before, but that's a fantastic idea. It would act as a great "reset," which is kind of what I'm using cigarettes for now. I also definitely need to look into an online support group for it.
    I am a former smoker, and maybe I have some helpful insight.
    In quitting, I tried to think about it as a life-style and permanent change. I think that thinking bigger picture helps you be more forgiving of yourself when you slip up while maintaining your greater goal. I also know that smoking is habitual in that, for instance, you always light a cigarette when you get into the car, or you always take your break and have a cigarette at work. So I would advise trying to change one of these at a time. When you get in the car, consciously do not light a cigarette. When you have your break, try to stay in the building and walk around rather than go outside.

    I've kind of started on this. We got a new car about a year ago, and we don't allow ourselves to smoke while driving anymore. One of the tough things is that I'm a stay/work at home mom, so short breaks will pop up randomly throughout the day, rather than just getting one lunch break. It's every time I'm waiting for a bottle to warm up, or when my daughter goes down for a nap the thought of a cigarette pops into my head. That's something I'm really struggling with.
    Motivators:
    Every day write down how much you spent on cigarettes normally. For me it was like 6.25 a DAY. Then every day keep a running total of how much you have saved by not smoking, and at then use that money on things you wouldn't normally buy for yourself. Maybe it's more expensive makeup, or better running shoes, a fancy hair change, whatever indulgences materialistically that you can reward yourself with.

    I'm definitely working from this angle. My husband and I calculated that we've been spending about $500 a month on cigarettes. Once we're able to quit, we're planning on using that money to renovate our basement. He'll get his man cave, and I'll have a new studio and a more functional laundry area.
  • hurricaneemly
    hurricaneemly Posts: 23 Member
    Kyrenora wrote: »
    I could really use some advice from any former smokers. I'm trying to adapt to an overall healthier lifestyle, which absolutely includes cutting out the cigarettes. I've done wonderfully so far in a lot of areas, but I'm really struggling with this part. I'm not even having much luck at reducing the amount that I smoke now.

    In the past, when I've been able to quit for long periods of time (like during pregnancy) I've done it by replacing it with other habits that aren't necessarily great for me, such as overindulging on high-calorie snacks with very little nutritional value. I really don't want to do that again, since I've made so much progress in improving the way that I eat.

    One suggestion I've gotten is to work out when I'm having a craving. I usually smoke after exercising though, so that typically just intensifies the want for a cigarette. It does allow me to put it off for a little while, so it's a useful tactic in that sense, but I can't work out 24 hours a day.

    I know that when it comes down to it, it's really just a question of willpower. I just have to make it through the first few days and then it gets easier. However, while my body is adapting, I get so frustrated and cranky, and start taking it out on the people around me - including my very young daughter, who could not possibly understand why Mama's so mad at her.

    So really, my question is, for those of you who have managed to quit smoking without substituting other bad habits, what worked for you? How did you control the initial irritability?

    First of all - congratulations! As a former smoker, I know how hard it is to even get to the point where you're comfortable to quit, never mind the actual quitting.

    I'm quitting again currently and it's a real struggle to quit and avoid binge eating. In the past, I would drink ice cold water every time I had a craving to smoke. It worked because the shock of the cold water killed the urge and I stayed hydrated. When I feel down, I just try to remember that it's all for the bigger common goal of getting healthy and staying healthy.
  • TheBeachgod
    TheBeachgod Posts: 825 Member
    One thing I did was buy a bag of Skittles. I'd pop one in my mouth and let it dissolve instead of chewing it. You will not believe how long that takes and how long a bag of Skittles will last!
  • slickmickey
    slickmickey Posts: 113 Member
    my husband was a long time smoker (15ish years - 2+ packs a day). this summer he had a heart attack at 33 and honestly there is no reason for him to be alive right now. "thankfully" they had him pretty much in a coma for a week+ (breathing tube, the whole bit) and since he was such a heavy smoker they put him on a nicotine patch. while he was "out" it was decided for him he was quitting. no ifs, ands, or buts. he stayed on the patch and by the time he got to step 3, he decided he was done with them - he has sensitive skin and it was always red and warm and they didnt stick so we had to tape them on. but he got that far, and i want to say it was like a month and a half. i've noticed that he is now addicted to mints. he keeps a giant bag in his car and pops them constantly. maybe you can try something like that? i've heard its the process of relearning to do everything without a cigarette thats the hardest. when he drove, he always smoked, the whole time in the car. so thats his biggest trigger. replacing it with popping mints i can deal with. he likes the life savor wint-o-green or whatever they are called. i think they are like 15 calories each?
  • katalinax87
    katalinax87 Posts: 146 Member
    Can anyone reconmend a vaping brand? I'm based in the UK and want to quit without commiting an atrocity
  • jhall260
    jhall260 Posts: 111 Member
    cecsav1 wrote: »
    I quit smoking too (you know, for like the sixth time... lol), and so far, I've done really well. The first thing I did was pick a quit date. I smoked normally right up until midnight the night before. BUT at midnight, I cut up the remaining cigarettes, threw out all ashstrays, (kept one lighter for candles), and Febreezed everything in the house.

    As you mentioned, I think it's important to find healthier habits to replace smoking. I made a list before I quit:
    Drink hot tea
    Meditate 10 min
    Go for a walk
    Watch a TED Talk
    Lotion on hands/arms/legs
    Paint nails
    Deep breathing
    10 min nap

    Also, I've (temporarily) removed some things from my life that remind me of smoking. Instead of coffee, I drink tea. I don't go to the gas station 5 blocks from my house now, because that's where I bought my cigarettes, and I haven't spent much time at my mom's because she's a smoker, and we used to sit around and drink coffee and smoke and chat.


    You may even be able to find a group on here or FB or something with whom you can check in with when you feel the need to smoke. Hope this helps!

    This is some great advice that I forgot to mention. You have to remove what temptations you can and alter your normal patterns. I did the same thing. I went to a different gas station. Deep cleaned my car (it smelled so much better!), and frankly I even changed some of the friends that I associated with - it sucked but it needed to be done.

  • JustChristy79
    JustChristy79 Posts: 156 Member
    edited January 2016
    I smoked a pack a day for 19 years. My husband smoked even longer than that. We both quit cold turkey on New Years Day 3 years ago. We've seen friends and family struggle with patches and pills and vape pens and nic gum. We decided to suck it up & be done with the nonsense once and for all. We smoked our last one at midnight and threw away all our lighters, ashtrays, etc. We made a poster and hung it on the wall in our kitchen. It was a list of things to do when a craving hit. "Go for a walk. Have a healthy snack. Take a bath. Go to a movie with a non-smoker friend. Throw down with the punching bag....And so on." We went to bed and never smoked again. We'd made up our minds and we stuck to it, even when it was hard, and you can too.
  • kbmnurse
    kbmnurse Posts: 2,484 Member
    It's gross period. STOP!!!!!!!!!!!
  • Kyrenora
    Kyrenora Posts: 133 Member
    kbmnurse wrote: »
    It's gross period. STOP!!!!!!!!!!!

    I'm trying to stop. That's why I posted this thread. I know the impact that it has, but the nature of addiction causes this basic logic to be overruled. I've heard remarks like this since I had my first cigarette about 15 years ago, and the only thing they do is provoke a stubbornness that actually prevents me from successfully quitting. I hope you never have to see addiction in someone you love and respond this way, because it is not constructive.
  • amorthee
    amorthee Posts: 14 Member
    Hi there, I was in your shoes this time last year. I made it my goal to quit smoking in 2015. On January 4th 2015 I smoked my last and final cigarette. I made a promise to myself that I would never smoke again, not even if I wanted to! I downloaded "quit buddy" on the iPhone and I stuck with it. I gained some weight from quitting but the extra pounds were worth it. It's now 2016 and I'm without cigarettes for a year. Although I think about it cigarettes, I know I will never break my promise. (All my friends that quit with me, had a few drinks and smoked a cigarette months after quitting and now they are full blown smokers again) you just can never smoke again! I'm not fully focused on my HEALTH and working on losing the extra couple of pounds and eating right!
  • ThermoDust
    ThermoDust Posts: 33 Member
    I am trying the same thing. First time I tried to quit I was SO angry the first few days and was going to visit my sister and kids that I just smoked again so I wouldn't take it out on them. Starting tomorrow I am going to try again, but this time I am going to start with the smoking portion not the nicotine part. I am replacing the cigarettes with nicotine toothpicks. Not 100% sure it will help but I know I cannot just go cold turkey without major problems.
  • GlitzyKismet
    GlitzyKismet Posts: 9 Member
    I quit cold turkey on my third attempt, roughly four years ago. Sounds silly, but the thing that saved me when trying to quit were drinking straws! They're about the same diameter as a cigarette, so I would cut the straws down to cigarette length and suck on those when I got a craving. It had the same "feel" in my hand as a cigarette, and you still got the "inhale/exhale" feeling. And because you're consciously slowing your breathing down to suck air through the straw, it provides a relaxation effect like a deep-breathing exercise would.
  • minniestar55
    minniestar55 Posts: 339 Member
    Talk to your doctor about Zyban, it completely erases the craving & may help you along with a smoking cessation program.
  • angerelle
    angerelle Posts: 174 Member
    I read Allen Carr's Easy Way to Stop Smoking. You smoke while you read it - by the end I was desperate to grind out my last cigarette. I had a brief relapse about 6 years in, but read the book again and it must be over 15 years altogether now. I was a 20 a day Rothmans/Embassy smoker...
  • iwatchthesunrise
    iwatchthesunrise Posts: 4 Member
    Yes! Help! I just completed 24 hours of smoking. However, I feel so queasy right now AND yesterday I found myself eating a lot. I tried to choose healthier foods to binge on, but anything that isn't in moderation is a bad thing anyway.
    I'm over smoking, though.
    I'm over being unhealthy, too.
  • HorrorGeekLiz
    HorrorGeekLiz Posts: 195 Member
    edited March 2016
    Kyrenora wrote: »
    Vape. I smoked for over half my life and never once tried to quit. I started vaping in the summer and reducing the nicotine content in the juice slowly over a few months. I haven't had a cigarette since I started and now I reach for my vaporizer maybe once a day or twice on a stressful day.

    It allows you to tone down the nicotine, but still lets you go through the motions of smoking.

    It doesn't smell, you don't have to a finish a whole cigarette, you can just take a few puffs here and there, it doesn't cost a lot, it's easy and it really does help you quit smoking. If you lower the nicotine to zero but still enjoy the motions and feeling of vaping, you can do so with 0 nicotine.

    I recommend to anyone having a hard time, me and my partner did it together and it saved us from murdering each other.

    My husband's best friend did this, and it worked for him, but I've seen so many articles come out lately about how vaping has its own health risks. Maybe I could use it just for a transitional period...

    They probably do have health risks, but they aren't nearly as bad as the risks of continuing smoking. I quit with them. I used them for 2.5 years before finally ditching them and nicotine all together. And when I did that, I still had a binge period. It's awful, but sugar cravings are a withdrawal symptom.

    Vaping provides the nicotine in a more satisfying way to a smoker than gum or patches. I eventually realized I was no longer vaping because of the smoking habit. At that point it was all about the nicotine, and that's when I decided to go cold turkey.

    If it weren't for vaping, I'm certain I would still be smoking. If no other method has worked for you, I highly recommend giving it a shot.
  • Kyrenora
    Kyrenora Posts: 133 Member
    Wanted to give you all the update: I picked up a vaporizer and it's really been helpful. I do still have an occasional cigarette, but it's less than 2 a week, and I can string together multiple weeks without one.

    I started vaping at 18mg, and I've made my way down to 6mg juice. I'm hoping I can cut it all the way down to 0 and then stop completely.

    Thanks everyone for your advice!
  • quebot
    quebot Posts: 99 Member
    Kyrenora wrote: »
    Wanted to give you all the update: I picked up a vaporizer and it's really been helpful. I do still have an occasional cigarette, but it's less than 2 a week, and I can string together multiple weeks without one.

    I started vaping at 18mg, and I've made my way down to 6mg juice. I'm hoping I can cut it all the way down to 0 and then stop completely.

    Thanks everyone for your advice!

    That's awesome! I started smoking during my divorce a few years ago. It started out as a way to deal with stress, and as the stress increased, it became a habit. I was able to quit with vaping. I've almost quit vaping occasionally, but I still take it to bars and places where I'd be tempted to smoke. I keep one in the car too because I used to like smoking while I drive (I drive A LOT). A lot of people give vaping a hard time, but I know so many people it has helped stop smoking. I'm glad it's working for you!
  • Geocitiesuser
    Geocitiesuser Posts: 1,429 Member
    When I quit smoking I used all of the extra anxiousness to exercise more. I actually LOST weight from quitting.