You Can Quit Tobacco Book CoverStop Tobacco Today Header

Recent clinical investigation has disclosed that one pack a day will take five years off your life; two packs a day will remove ten; three packs will eliminate fifteen.
If someone tells you of a friend who smoked two packs a day and lived to be 75, just know that if he had not smoked at all—he would have lived to be at least 85!
In the summer of 1986, the Surgeon General reported that tobacco was the Number One drug abuse killer in America.
At the present time, 15% of all the deaths in the United States are tobacco based.

Chapter Ten
A Word about Overweight

Several times in this book we have discussed the relationship of weight to tobacco. In summary, it generally works this way:

1. Smoking will keep your weight somewhat lower. But smoking must be stopped or you will experience far worse troubles than weight.

2. When you quit tobacco, your weight will tend to go up a few pounds for several weeks. But you will have so much more energy available to you, that it will not be difficult to have added only a fairly small amount—and perhaps be able to take off that extra that was added.

Here, briefly, is some additional information on this topic:

Body metabolism works at a slower rate when you cut out the use of nicotine. This means that you will not burn up your food so rapidly. On the other hand, the food will begin to taste better. Also, because you have had something in your mouth for years, you will be tempted to eat between meals.

So on one hand we have a better taste for food and a temptation to eat between meals. And on the other, we have a slower, steadier metabolism coupled with a decided increase in energy and capacity for more exercise than before.

The solution is (1) a careful, nourishing diet; (2) resisting the temptation to overeat; (3) increase the amount of exercise you are obtaining each day.

"The obese state in its simplest form represents an imbalance between caloric intake and caloric expenditure. The available evidence suggests that most obesity in most instances represents a combination of increased food intake and decreased energy expenditure."—Dr. George Bray, "Postgraduate Medicine," May, 1972.

The obvious solution is less food in and/or more energy out. "In my clinical experience the most striking examples of prolonged weight loss have been seen in grossly obese patients who voluntarily undertook regular and vigorous exercises."—Ibid.

Another factor that should be considered is that of low blood sugar. Some people have a tendency to eat too much, and that drives their blood sugar up; then it takes a nosedive and falls too low—and, feeling that starvation faces them, they eat some more.

The solution here is to eat a careful diet, and only at regular mealtimes. Each meal should be moderate in sugar intake. Part of the problem is developing a habit of eating too much food and/or too many sweet things at a meal. The answer is to keep each meal moderate. And then after the meal, walk, work, exercise. Don't just sit around.

At mealtime, you want to eat the most nourishing food that will satisfy with the smallest amount, provide few refined sugars and starches, and yet provide you with the most energy for the exercise you need after eating.

Eat a good breakfast, and let your evening meal be the lightest. But if you have a weight problem, one of the simplest solutions is to skip the evening meal. Follow the other suggestions in this chapter; skip suppers, and you will probably do as best as you are able to do, given your particular physical and employment conditions.

Eliminate or reduce free sugars, such as commercial sweetened cereals, sugar on breakfast foods (sprinkle with raisins instead), regular desserts (such as ice cream, cake, pie, candy), soft drinks (use fruit juices instead—but not commercial fruit drinks). Use fresh fruit rather than canned fruit.

Eliminate or drastically reduce intake of animal fat, including meat, grease, dairy fat, cheese, and butter. Avoid the use of margarine, vegetable oils, and oily salad dressings. Be selective about spreads for breads, and use them only in small quantities. Olives and avocado in small amounts are excellent.

Avoid refined cereals and white bread. Instead use unrefined cereals, brown rice, and whole wheat bread. Use cooked cereals rather than dry cereals. Most baked goods are high in fat and/or sugar. Be cautious about their use.

If you eat eggs, do not use more than three a week.

Do not use any alcoholic beverages. Do not drink coffee or any product containing caffeine.

Get adequate rest, sleep, fresh air, sunshine, and pure water. Maintain a regular and moderate exercise program.