Quitting smoking can make you feel as though you’re wasting away with hunger, but guess what…YOU’RE NOT, in fact the tendency is to gain weight during this time! Nicotine is a powerful appetite suppressant, so naturally once you remove it from your body your hormonal patterns shift. This is because of a combination of factors, but primarily attributed to decreasing levels of Ghrelin, an appetite suppressing hormone (Jessen, Buemann, Toubro, et al. 2005).
When it comes to your diet it pretty much becomes a mind game from the moment you start, and continues right the way through to the end. However, once you re- calibrate your thoughts to start seeing your nutrition as a lifestyle and not a chore, things get a whole lot easier! This being said, it does seem that no amount of mental strength can stop the hunger pangs associated with smoking cessation…you’ve just got to channel them differently. So next time you are suffering with a hunger pang do the following:
- Get a protein source i.e. a whey protein shake. Although the protein in a protein shake (powder and liquid form) is partially broken down already, the chemical structure of protein means it is more satiating than carbs and fat. The satiating properties combined with the physical space the shake occupies, at a relatively low calorie cost, makes a protein shake a great option.
- Protein Bar- Ensure you get yourself a protein bar that is no more than 250kcal and that delivers a minimum of 20g of protein, it is also pertinent to get one that is low in total carbs and sugar (say no more than 10-15g carbs). As well as this you might also wish to split a bar into two and consume it in two stages e.g. mid-morning and mid-afternoon. By splitting into two you are spreading the calorie load allowing the body to digest and metabolise the calories.
A protein bar/shake, despite being a relatively nutritious source of calories is still pretty calorific, therefore if it’s consumed in excess you will still hinder your weight loss goals. Therefore be controlled and disciplined with your snacking guys, and make the most of a structured and deliberate supplement plan.
From all of us here at discount supplements, stick with it, it’s the best decision you’ll ever make… keep up the good work!