The Secret to Quit Smoking

Yeah, I know what you're thinking. Some of you out there believe I'm going to tout the latest prescription drug on the market. Others of you are probably thinking I'm going to talk about alternative medicine choices for smoking cessation. (Image credit)

Well, you're both wrong. The secret to stop smoking is simple -- Take A Walk! It's simple. It's natural, and has no side effects. What? Do you think I'm kidding? Do you think I'm out of my mind? (this is possible, ha) But here, I tell the truth.

Described in this Associated Press story, researchers at the University of Exter have found that as little as five minutes of exercise can help smokers quit. The research is published in the medical journal called Addiction.

[Dr. Adrian] Taylor and [his] colleagues reviewed 12 papers looking at the connection between exercise and nicotine deprivation. They focused on exercises that could be done outside a gym, such as walking and isometrics, or the flexing and tensing of muscles. According to their research, just five-minutes of exercise was often enough to help smokers overcome their immediate need for a nicotine fix.

"What's surprising is the strength of the effect," said Dr. Robert West, professor of health psychology at University College London. West was not involved in the review. "They found that the acute effects of exercise were as effective as a nicotine patch," he said.

Who would have thunk this? Exercise conquers nicotine cravings? That's an interesting idea. I wonder if it works for food cravings as well. I'll have to try this out myself. Maybe I can put my tennis shoes next to the potato chips to remind myself. Hmmmmm.....