smoking cessation, weight gain, pyruvate

Ask the Doc: Weight Gain After Smoking Cessation

Ask the Doc: Weight Gain After Smoking Cessation

© 2006 Wellness Clubs of


Iíve recently stopped smoking and Iím concerned about gaining weight. Is there anything I can do to prevent it? S.C.

Dear S.C.: One of the effects of nicotine is to increase the bodyís metabolic rate. That is why weight gain is so common when people stop smoking. A little known fact, however, is that while smokers weigh, on average, 5 to 10 pounds less than non-smokers their weight distribution is less appealing. Smoking tends to cause fat to be distributed around the waist, hips, and other areas where it is least appealing.

I recommend taking steps to increase your metabolism apart from the nicotine. Exercise is an excellent way to increase your metabolism. Aerobic exercise such as walking, jogging, bicycling and swimming causes your body to continue to burn more calories during the succeeding 24-hour period, not just while you are doing the activity. Muscle strengthening exercises have a similar effect as the body burns calories to build and maintain the muscle mass being created. Another option is to use a supplement called pyruvate. Pyruvate increases cellular metabolism and this may help to counterbalance the elimination of nicotine.  -Dr. Peterson

Receive the latest Wellness Updates and News.  Subscribe now at