Quit smoking while losing weight?

I’ve been adopting a healthier lifestyle for a couple of months now, so far so good, I’ve lost more than 20 pounds of fat, eating healthy and going to gym 5 times a week. I’ve been smoking for about 10 years, 1 pack a day for the last 7 years.

I want to quit, but I’m not sure if it’s a good idea right now, since a lot of people gain weight when they quit. Also I consider my bad eating habits as a form of addiction, and fighting 2 addictions at the same time seems like a bad idea to me (increasing the risk of failing at both).

On the other hand the improvement in stamina from quitting could mean harder workouts aiding in the weight-loss, so basically I don’t know what’s best at this points. Any thoughts?

It depends. I quit smoking about 4 years ago (pack a day for 30 years) and have gained about 15 pounds. I replaced mindless smoking with mindless eating. I still went to the gym when I smoked but I felt like such a hypocrite. But your healthier lifestyle may make quitting easier now that you are on the "healthy’ bandwagon. It took me several years to quit and I finally quit with the aid of Chantix.

What I’m saying is try quitting. If you don’t succeed, you can always quit again. I view my eating behavior as a form of addiction also.

Quitting smoking will definitely make you hungrier, thus making it harder (but not impossible) to diet. Have you considered those water vapor cigarettes?


It’s normal to gain 5-10 lbs. If you are going to the gym 5 times a week and eating health snacks, that will certainly help. In the grand scheme of things, what’s healthier? Continuing to smoke a pack a day, or possibly gaining a few extra pounds which you can eventually work off further down the road? I think it’s pretty clear.

If you don’t quit now, when will you? When you’ve “beaten” your food addiction? When will that point be?

Sounds like an excuse. Quit.

I did both by keeping a food diary, daily weigh-ins and long daily walks. Later I added a rowing machine. I also avoided bars because you could smoke there…

I did both. I worked with a lifestyle coach for the smoking cessation and Weight Watchers for the weight loss. I did manage to lose an additional 15 lbs since I quit smoking, but it’s taken a year to do that and it’s been tougher to manage the oral fixation because my choices are limited to gum and toothpicks.

My advice is to change the smoking behaviors before you actually quit and have a plan on how to deal with the oral fixation. You will also likely experience at least a slowdown in weight loss due to metabolic changes, so be prepared for that. It will be tough, but you can do it!

Excuse?, nah I don’t need one since I feel no guilt over it, I just figure that I’ll end up quitting anyway so I’m figuring out the best timing. Doing it when I reach my ideal weight is too far down the road of course, so I’m thinking about doing it when I cross some threshold, like when I’m no longer technically obese or something like that.

Thanks for the replies so far, I’ll discuss it with my doctor and nutritionist and see what they have to say.

Substituting sugar for smokes is a bad trade. Especially if there are diabetics in your ancestral mix.

It’s a perfect time to quit. You have the replacement already established in your life, so once the cigarettes are no longer a part of your life, the healthy habits can overtake the roles that smoking once held. Having a void where smoking used to be, while going on with one’s life in the exact same manner-just sans smoking-is why so many people fail to stay quit. You must replace the habit with another, preferably healthier, one. For me, that habit was exercise.

That actually makes a lot of sense, I’ll definitely take it in consideration, I can’t exercise 20 times a day though can I?.. maybe some simple short-burst thing I could do throughout the day… interesting.

Your metabolism may get a bit sluggish for a while but I lead a little group of calorie counters through a quit process with a lot of success, it was a question of accepting that nibbling is helpful so changing to small meals, setting out snacks, sipping cold water through a straw and ignoring the scales - just trusting the maths of calorie counting, most chose to eat maintenance cals for the first week or so then slowly dropped them back to a 500 calorie deficit.

Our mantra was “A craving is just a question, the answer can always be no”

I originally quit using a site called quitnet, back in the day the weight issues were talked about a lot, it may be worth exploring though I haven’t been there for years myself.

If you still have obviously bad eating habits, I’d take a couple of months to train yourself into good eating/cooking/buying habits before you go cold turkey. You will get a heartier appetite and more sensitive palate when you smoke. When that happens, you’ll be better off if you can make a variety of healthy snacks and dishes without even thinking about it.

Along those lines… get all the sugar out of your house. Go cold turkey on that now. Alcohol too. I know they say red wine is good for you blah blah, but fat people have different concerns. Kick those two things, learn to prepare good foods, then tackle cigarettes. And don’t take 6 months to get there. Good luck!

You can do 10 body weight squats in seconds, they and pushups are my emergency endorphin release mechanisms.

I’m not a smoker, but I would suggest those vapor cigarettes. Getting rid of the tars is a pretty huge step healthwise and you can adjust the nicotine level of the modules you use to cut back if you wish.