Healthy Habits to Replace Smoking With

Healthy Habits to Replace Smoking With

No one said quitting smoking was easy. In fact, it’s thought that some smokers may take 30 or more attempts to quit. But don’t let that stop you from trying — stopping smoking has a significant positive impact on your health and bank balance, reducing your risk of developing serious conditions and the amount of money you spend each week. And these days, there are plenty of methods you can use to improve your chances of quitting for good, from nicotine replacement therapy to prescription treatments.

The good news is that smoking rates are declining: 1 in 5 adults in the world consume tobacco today, according to the most recent World Health Organization tobacco trends report, compared to 1 in 3 adults in the world in 2000.

Despite feeling better, many ex-smokers find themselves trying to fill the gap smoking has left with something else. So why not make that something healthy and boost your wellbeing even more? Here are some healthy habits to replace smoking with.

Add physical activity to your day

Engaging in regular physical activity not only helps in managing weight gain often associated with quitting, but also offers a natural high that can diminish the need for a nicotine fix. Moderate or vigorous exercise prompts the body to release endorphins, which are neurotransmitters that affect how we experience pleasure and pain. This can improve your mood and alleviate stress, helping to curb cravings and keep you on track.

  • Examples of moderate exercise: brisk walking, gardening, gentle cycling, gentle swimming
  • Examples of vigorous exercise: dancing, indoor cycling, playing football, running, skiing

The most important thing is to find a form — or forms — of exercise you enjoy. This means you’re more likely to keep doing it.

Try a new hobby

Wellbeing isn’t just about physical health — your mental health is important too. And pursuing a hobby you’ve always wanted to try can give you a real mood boost. Quitting smoking opens up a world of new opportunities to explore your interests. Perhaps you’ve always wanted to learn to paint or play an instrument? Or maybe there’s a book you’ve been meaning to read? Engaging in activities that you enjoy not only keeps your mind off of smoking, but also adds joy and fulfilment to your life.

Make time for relaxation

Many smokers use cigarettes as part of their stress management toolkit. However, there are plenty of other tools available that don’t come with harmful side effects. Deep breathing exercises, mindfulness meditation, or even a hot bath can provide the stress relief that cigarettes do. Yoga, tai chi, or progressive muscle relaxation can be particularly effective in reducing stress and helping you stay smoke-free, plus they double as exercise.

Quitting smoking can be challenging, but it’s within your power to do so. The healthy habits you adopt during this time will not only support you in quitting but will also enhance your life on multiple levels. Remember, every step you take towards a healthier lifestyle is a step in the right direction. Take it one day at a time, and before you know it, you’ll have built a life that’s not only smoke-free but teeming with vitality.



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