Smoking, we’ve been told time and again, is injurious to health. Sure, it gives you a few minutes of bliss because it is an excellent stress buster, but the negative impact that comes along with it is far worse than its benefits. Each cigarette you smoke puts you at risk of cancer, heart ailments, and bad quality of life.
Healthy and Natural Substitutes for Smoking
If you’re reading this article, the chances are that you are considering or planning on ditching this bad habit. Read on for some healthy and natural substitutes to beat this addiction.
1. Keep Yourself Busy
Are you a nicotine addict? Then the chances are that you might experience withdrawal symptoms. This can be challenging, as most of the symptoms experienced include restlessness, anxiety, irritation, fatigue, sleep disturbances, and mood changes. To be able to deal with this, you need to keep yourself busy. Take up a new course or join a community. This way, you will keep your mind busy.
2. Make Sure You Do Not Isolate Yourself
Most of the time smoking is a social activity. People take smoke breaks in between long hours of work or during a get-together. If you’ve decided to give up smoking, the chances are that you cut yourself from your usual smoker buddies. Chain smokers might have mood changes during this phase which will further accelerate the need to isolate yourself. But you need to avoid doing this. Giving up smoking is not a form of punishment. You do not have to deal with this alone. Talk to your near and dear ones, tell them about your decision. Tell your smoker buddies about this step in the other direction, so that they understand your boundaries.
3. Think About the Benefits of Not Smoking
Cravings can be hard when you focus on how much you really need a smoke. Instead, look in the other direction. Think of how you are not killing your lungs, and eventually yourself. Your heart is now much healthier than when you are constantly smoking. Even the texture of your skin and hair gets better when you give up smoking. The benefits of smoking on any given day will weigh heavier than the cons of smoking, for which there are none.
4. Take Up a New Hobby
Taking up new hobbies can have a positive effect on your life. It can help you grow and become more productive. It can also give you a sense of confidence and improve your skill set. Take up a new hobby like reading a good book or painting. There are plenty of options available for you to choose from.
5. Hit the Gym
Working out is great for your body, as well as your mind, it is also one of the best alternatives to smoking for stress relief. Sign up at the nearest gym and work your way to good health. When you smoke, the brain releases feel-good hormones. When you quit smoking, you go into a sense of withdrawal mainly because these feel-good hormones are not being produced. Exercise actually helps release these feel-good hormones, which is why we feel great after a good workout session.
6. Distract Yourself When Cravings Hit
You are bound to have cravings. This is part and parcel of giving up on addiction. But when you feel like these cravings are creeping on you, try and distract yourself with something else. Get up and take a walk, call a friend, or simply pick a book that you can read. Try not to acknowledge the cravings.
Acupuncture is an ancient therapy that involves thin needles that are inserted into the body. Acupuncture therapy is useful for several issues, and smoking is one of them. However, while this does not work for everyone, it does for a few – the jury is still out on whether this is an effective treatment or not.
8. Opt for Electronic Cigarettes or Herbal Cigarettes
Electronic or e-cigarettes are battery-operated devices that are a less harmful alternative to conventional cigarettes. Herbal cigarettes are a more organic base, which is again a less harmful alternative to conventional cigarettes. These cigarettes contain alternative smoking herbs that have little to no nicotine content. You can opt for this instead of your usual but you need to know that while these are less harmful in comparison, they are still bad for your health. The objective here is to completely put an end to this bad habit and not to opt for the lesser of two evils.
9. Pamper Yourself
Get yourself a massage or buy a box of chocolates. If you have successfully done away with smoking, then you’ve earned yourself the privilege of giving yourself incentives. This further motivates you to stick with your decision of leaving behind the pack of cigarettes.
10. Replace Cigarettes with Water or Carrot Sticks
For some smokers, one issue they face when they give up smoking is the urge to do something with their mouth. Sipping water is a great replacement for smoking. Water has only positive benefits, as opposed to smoking. If this does not work, cut up some carrot sticks and consume it whenever you feel the urge to light a cigarette.
Here are a few frequently asked questions by those who plan on giving up smoking or want to opt for healthier alternatives –
1. Are There Any Nicotine Free Cigarettes?
Yes, nicotine-free cigarettes do exist, but before you get excited, you should know that these cigarettes are, even though not as harmful as traditional cigarettes, harmful nevertheless. Most of these cigarettes are made from mint, lemongrass, and cocoa bean shells. While these herbs do not contain nicotine, it exposes your system to other disease-causing toxins, tar, and carbon monoxide, when burnt.
2. Is E-cigarette Vapor Bad?
E-cigarettes are marketed as a healthier option to conventional cigarettes, but here’s the thing – no cigarette is ‘healthy’. E-cigarettes, in fact, contain cartridges that are actually loaded with nicotine and other chemicals, which is bad for your health. These chemicals are converted into vapour, which is inhaled by the smoker.
The best thing you can do is dropping the habit of smoking. Don’t let something so hazardous take control of your life.