Smoking, one of the main causes of deaths that could be prevented, can determine the appearance of many health problems, such as lung cancer or oral cancer. On short term, smoking has been associated with reduced appetite, which is why smokers who want to maintain their weight, fear that giving up this habit might predispose them to gaining weight.
But now, a new study comes to show that quitting smoking does not lead to gaining weight on long term. For this study, the scientists at the University of Otago, New Zealand, have relied on the results of the long-term survey, Dunedin Multidisciplinary Health and Development Study. This study monitored almost 1,000 people who were born in 1972-1973 in Dunedin. The data that has been collected at regular intervals, starting at the age of 15 to 38 years, included smoking habits and the weight of the subjects.
Following the analysis, it was found that approximately one third of individuals were already smokers, starting with the age of 21. At 38 years old, 40% of the smokers had given up this habit. The researchers concluded that on a period of 17 years, people who quit smoking had a weight comparable with that of the individuals who had never smoked. Specifically, those who had given up smoking, gained 5 kg, which is a small difference compared to people who had not given up smoking. These results were observed for women and men.