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Tue, May-21-02, 08:24
Here is my story, please tell me what I'm doing wrong.
I quit smoking December 1st 2001. I used the nicoderm patches and they worked great with me. I used the patches for about 5 weeks and then decided I did n't need them. My weight was stable (125 lbs) and I was a size 4, (notice that I said I 'was' a size 4).
About 2 weeks after discontinuing the patches, my clothes started geting a little snug. I thought OK, my metablolism is changing, I'll really start watching the carbs and I went below 15 Gms. a day. (I have been low carbing since 1998, was a size 10 and went down to a 4 and have stayed there.) I have been basically doing Atkins induction for 3 months and have not lost 1 lb.!!! So I stared aerobics and weight resistence 5 out of 7 days a week, lost 3 lbs 2 weeks ago and then no more.
I feel great and I'm so thankful that I quit smoking,but I have 2 closets full of size 4 very expensive clothes that I can't wear. The 13 lbs. that I gained will not budge.
I'm eating about 1000 calories a day, the only carbs that I get are from either the occasional glass of white wine that has ice in it, or my salad dressing.
Has anyone been thru this?? Am I doing something wrong?? Or should I just accept this as my new weight??
Thanks! And good luck to all of you that are contemplating quitting smoking. I hate the smell of it now and I was a 2 pack a day smoker.

Wed, May-22-02, 09:29
1st I will give U a bit of my history. I started low-carbing 14 months ago. I reached my goal weight last sept. but cause I knew I would be quitting smoking I stayed between 132-134 for at least 3 months. I quit smoking 9 weeks ago using the patch and I weighed in this morning at 137. Several things can contribute to my weight gain.....1st metabolism, 2nd water, 3rd the fact I started doing resistance training 6 weeks ago. I may well gain a few more pounds being off the patch now however Im certain it wont be much AND my clothes fit the same as they did 2 months ago. NOW having said all that.....I looked at your profile. U are 5'6"...same height as me. How old are U? Im 37. I wonder if U were under weight for your height? Im thinking because U are a non-smoker your body has adjusted to a more healthy weight for U? Also I can see for certain U are starving yourself. 1000 calories a day is not nearly enough. U need to eat at least 10X your weight in calories a day and I think that is even way to low. I didnt change my eating habits much since quitting smoking. I hear the worst thing U can do is to cut back too much cause that isnt good for your metabolism. I use a site www.fitday.com and most often I am eating 1900-2700 calories a day. Also U may NOT be getting enough carbs. Too few carbs can cause a weight stall. Are U drinking lots of water? Takeing supplements? I hope my suggestions help and please feel free to ask if U need more help.

Wed, May-22-02, 10:56
I'm just so frustrated!! It's not really the 13 lbs. that is really bugging me, it's just the fact that all of my clothes are all new (within the last year) and they are so tight.
I'm 44. I have been trying to drink at least 1.5 liters a day (that is water and green tea).
I'm taking so many supplements, at this point I wonder if they are doing more harm than good. CLA, L-carnitine, alpha lipoic acid, B complex to name a few. I have increased the L-carnitine to 3 Gms a day, that is supposedl to stimulate weight loss. I'm also taking Xenadrine, I don't think it has helped at all. I certainly don't feel any side effects from it. I have never excersized before, at least not like I'm doing now, and I never changed my eating habits when I quit smoking. As soon as i stopped using the patch, I started feeling the weight gain. I guess, the theory being, that as soon as the nicotine is not being released into your body your metabolism slows down. I would have thought that after 6 months my metabolism wuld have 'reset' itself??

Wed, May-22-02, 13:39
I am sorry U R frusterated. I did spend some time there myself when I 1st quit smoking. Everyone is different, so that when someone quits smoking, their reaction to it will be different form anyone elses. they say that some people actually dont put on any weight after they quit [ ya right I would like to see those people.] Some people only put on 5-8 and then others put on at least 10. Now from what I have seen most people put on about 10 pounds and of course many others put on over 20. My advice for U is to make some changes at this point. I would keep your exercise the same. I would start eating at least 1500 calories a day spread over 5 meals in a day. I would drink at between 2-3 liters of water a day on top of anything else U drink. As for your supplements it sounds like maybe U are overloading your system. Try cutting out some of the supplements for about 6 weeks, then maybe add some but take somethig else out. Just today in fact I did a vitamin switch. I was taking a product that contained ginseng aswell as others things. My multi-vitamin had ginseng and others herbs aswell. So I went on a different multi, cutting out a few of my other supplements and trying a products called "leans+" it is made in canada. Keep working at it... remember U are much more healthy weighing 13 pounds more than U did being U R a non-smoker now. I am positive eventually the weight will come off for U .

Thu, Jul-18-02, 10:18
frankly, you should be ecstatic you haven't gained more than you have.
i miss my clothes too. in fact, they are my motivation to lose pounds.
i only bought what i sincerely needed to get me through this summer. i intend to be my old size this fall.
i am almost 6 feet tall and have gained about 35 pounds. and everyone of them is killing me.
because i am so tall, no one really noticed until that last 10 pounds or so crept on.
i have gained 2 sizes.
i remember when i was working out like crazy and smoking -- i was a size 12 and loving it.
i have been a 14 most of my adult life.
now i am a 16 and it shocks me. :eek:
i feel good that i quit smoking, really good about that, and i have never considered returning to that habit, despite my anguish over the weight gain.
i have tried a lot of weight loss pills and supplements.
i didn't have any success with the l-carnitine either.
now i am taking
a multi, alphalpha, flax seed oil, fish oil, calcium complex.
i understand calcium is very important.
and never, never underestimate the power of water.

Tue, Jul-23-02, 19:18

I totally relate. I quit smoking January 16th, 2002. The weight gain didn't start until Mid-March. I was 120 pounds in January. Now I'm 128. And, like you, I've tried everything and the weight will not budge.

Personally, I think it's cause we're old. :) I'm 39; you're 46. I think the metabolic trauma of quitting is just too hard on aging bodies. Are you on HRT? Then you're in an even tougher boat.

Has anyone ever considered wearing the patch AFTER they've successfully quit? I mean, if nicotine revs your metabolism by 10 percent, wouldn't continuing to wear the patch maybe rev it up again?

Please don't flame me. I am NOT advocating this. It's just something I thought of this second.

Anyway, Mollie, my sympathies. I've embarked on an hour of hard cardio 6 to 7 days a week but am eating enough calories to support that expenditure. I'm doing SP and I truly believe her diet makes the most sense. 6 small meals a day will stoke your metobolic fire, and you're eating carbs according to your energy expenditure.

Any there any other post-35 smokers who initially gained weight, only to lose it eventually? If so, what did you do and how long did it take?

Us older, non-smoking broads gotta stick together. Fight the good fight.

Wed, Jul-24-02, 08:27

You must have read my mind. I have tried everything to lose the weight and it won't budge. I'm going to buy the nicotine patches and use one every other day and see if that helps. It certainly can't hurt. When I used them for the 3 months to quit smoking, I did n't gain any weight. The weight gain started after I stopped using them.

I'm 45 and post menopausal and I think that may have something to do with the weight gain as well. I did n't use any HRT because I was afraid of gaining weight.

I just look in my closet and want to cry. I had to buy some new clothes to get thru the summer-getting dressed has become a challenge. I think I bring new meaning the the phrase 'I don't have anything to wear!!'

I'm really happy that I quit smoking and I have no desire to smoke again and I honestly have to admit I have never felt or looked better.

I'll let you know how using the patch works to stimulate metabolism and weight loss.


Thu, Jul-25-02, 08:44
i am with you.
i am premenopausal and have lost about 6 pounds in two weeks following a pretty strict low carb diet.
i am going to switch to protein power after i return from vacation. leaving on saturday for nyc!
my current pledge to myslef is to keep low carbing get moving and fit into my fall wardrobe from last year. it is one thing to buy a new wardrobe for the summer, but the fall/winter clothes are a lot more expensive.
keep me posted on the patch and metabolism. my uncle quit smoking and chewed the gum for like two years. he also dropped 30 pounds lcg and working out.
he looks great.
and i intend to too!

Mon, Jul-29-02, 23:19
Im getting ready to quit smoking for the second time. The first time I quit, i gained 50 pounds (yucko) but I did end up losing it. This time, I've been researching the weight gain aspect. Mostly because Im as fat as Ive ever been, but really motivated to quit. Its my understanding that smoking, nicotine, burns about 200 calories a day. Most of the research Ive consulted indicates that its best not to "overdo" the attempt to hike up cardio or really reduce calories but to try and find a balance -- including burning more and eating less -- of about 200 calories a day. Most of what ive read said that this should limit the weight gain, although most of us will gain weight. Seems that the metabolism should bounce back within the first year.

Congratulations on quitting smoking! I hope to join your ranks soon!

Tue, Jul-30-02, 05:52
Good luck to you!

I'm interested in the sources you have for what you'd written in your post:

"Most of the research Ive consulted indicates that its best not to "overdo" the attempt to hike up cardio or really reduce calories but to try and find a balance -- including burning more and eating less -- of about 200 calories a day. Most of what ive read said that this should limit the weight gain, although most of us will gain weight. Seems that the metabolism should bounce back within the first year."

I'm a health writer, and would love to see this research, especially about the metabolism taking a year to "reset." It will make me feel better. :)

Could you tell me where i can find that research?

Tue, Jul-30-02, 07:53
I would be interested in seeing the literature also. Mentally, it would help me to know that after a year my metabolism will reset.

I have been using a nicoderm patch every other day for about a week now, to try and stimulate some weight loss. The days that I have the patch on, I have virtually no desire for food at all. If I could just lose even 5 pounds, I would be happy. :( :(

Wed, Jul-31-02, 06:45
Just wanted to check in and see how the weight loss is progressing. Glad to know the patch is working for appetite suppression. My 60 minutes of cardio a day is showing some results, I think, but progress is very slow. I'm going to kick it up to 2 hours a day when I get my treadmill next week.

Mon, Sep-16-02, 21:31
October 11 will be my one year anniversary as a non smoker, after 15 years of 2 packs a day.... did not gain a pound!!!! If you increase your cardio by 20 minutes, it makes up for the loss of metabolism (smoking increases your metabolism by 7%, so an extra 20 minutes on the treadmill will make up for this)... if you do this, you wont' gain weight.. unless you go nuts eating, but with the extra cardio, you help to curb your appetite as well... good luck all. i quit very cold turkey, and while it has not been hard yet... I know that i am a smoker for life and this will always be a struggle.. good luck!

Mon, Sep-16-02, 21:51
I too am an ex-smoker. I quit 6 yrs ago and gained 50 lbs over that time. It was something I read about the body's reaction to nicotine that made me try Atkins to lose the weight. I read that nicotine supresses the insulin production in our bodies. When one quits smoking, the nicotine is no longer there to "regulate" the insulin, so it goes haywire. In some people, it can correct itself after time, with other it does not. That is why some people gain more than others.
This discovery made me think that I needed to learn to regulate my own insulin. I have been on Atkins for 6 weeks and lost 23 lbs. I admit I have done no exercise, as I gain muscle too quickly and I want to know how much fat I'm really losing.


Tue, Oct-29-02, 08:21
Hi All,
First, we all have different metabolisms, so we all will have differing results.

That said, let me debunk the "age"factor.

I am 45. Smoked for 33 years. Quit 9 months ago. Cold Turkey. Gained 50 lbs. Started LC 3 weeks ago. Have lost 20 lbs. I eat tons of LC food. I exercise everyday...simple callisthenics and walking. I drink 3-4 quarts of water a day.

I think the major problem ex-smokers who are LCers have is that they are still eating "low fat." Time to get out of that mind-set. Eat a lot. Drink lots of water. Get some exercise every day.

You won't lose weight if you undereat. You won't lose weight if you overeat carbs. Your weight loss will slow if you drink too little water, don't exercise, or if you are allergic to something you are eating/drinking (like alcohol).

Strangely, although there are exceptions, smoking doesn't help an LCer because smoking suppresses the appetite...this is a bad thing...smokers have a tendency to eat too few fat/proteins.

Heap the plate!

Hope this helps.
Best wishes,

Fri, Mar-28-03, 07:29
Originally posted by jvantin1

Has anyone ever considered wearing the patch AFTER they've successfully quit? I mean, if nicotine revs your metabolism by 10 percent, wouldn't continuing to wear the patch maybe rev it up again?

Us older, non-smoking broads gotta stick together. Fight the good fight.

This is what I've been mulling over for the last couple of day's - I saw a post in the exercise section yesterday where Trainer Dan had put a link to an article on how weight trainers lost fat by using the patch. I have been on the verge of starting to smoke again - but now am really thinking about wearing the patch. I did not use the patch to quit. I wonder if the cigarette cravings would come back when I quit wearing the patch? I realize that the metabolism slow down would happen again but by then hopefully I would have lost the weight gained with the first quit and I would not do the incessant snacking that caused my gain.

anyone have thoughts on this :daze:

Fri, Mar-28-03, 07:59
Instead of doing something deleterious to your health why not do something beneficial that will also raise your metabolism?

Smoking reduces metabolism by about 10% - for a few months. It's not permanent, though. During those few months you can do three things guranteed to raise metabolism to compensate for that 10% - possibly even push you over that.

1) Lift weights. You want lean muscle. It takes approx 50 calories to feed a lb of muscle. Muscle's favourite food? Your body fat. BTW, it takes about 7 calories to feed a lb of fat.

2) Eat frequent smaller meals. It's called TEF; the Termogenic Effect of Food. Digesting food takes energy. The very act of eating keeps metabolism raised.

3) Drink / take green tea. 7-10 cups of green tea (caffinated) or one extract pill equivalent will raise metabolism by 4% over 24 hours. It's also a powerful antioxidant, an antifungal and possess anti carcinogenic properties. The extract must be standardized, however, to 60% polyphenols to be effective.

It can be difficult to grasp that what you put into your mouth can have as much if not more of an effect on your health and well being that a 'magic' pill or a patch - but it can and it does.

BTW, quitting smoking increases insulin sensitivity - in otherwords, it makes LC work better.

Congrats - it's not an easy monkey to kick. I know - it took me a year to do it the right way.


Fri, Mar-28-03, 08:58
Thanks Nat

I am already doing all the above except the frequent meals - though sometimes I DO snack - my plan discourages snacking. I think the idea of no snacks is to try and keep the blood sugar more level but I'm not sure of that. I did my cardio early this am on an empty stomache as I read in the fitness forum yesterday that it was more effective done that way. I see you are in the same area as I am and early a.m. can still be a mite nippy - maybe that will speed me from brisk walking to jogging :D