Expert reveals five tips to help ease nicotine cravings ahead of new disposable vape ban – from cinnamon sticks to meditation
Ahead of the new disposable vape ban, an expert has revealed five tips to help ease nicotine cravings - from sucking on cinnamon sticks to drinking green tea
The expert also warns against certain types of foods that can worsen nicotine cravings, such as spicy and sugary foods
Research claims that savings of £2,000 can be made in just one year by simply quitting smoking
As the government has announced its plans to ban disposable vapes, many people will be planning to quit vaping, smoking, and nicotine for good, aiming for a healthier, smoke-free lifestyle. However, once the cravings kick in, this can often be incredibly hard to stick to.
With that in mind, experts at Go Smoke Free have revealed their top five tips to ease nicotine cravings, offering ways to alleviate withdrawal symptoms and increase the likelihood of a positive outcome.
The expert says: "As the government moves to ban disposable vapes, many will be looking to overcome their nicotine addiction in preparation.
“For those combatting nicotine cravings, strategic dietary choices can play a key role in alleviating the challenge. Avoiding particularly spicy or sugary foods is crucial, as these can worsen cravings.
“By adding simple exercises, mindful habits, and smarter food choices, nicotine cravings can become more manageable over time. Also, it's important to remember that it’s not just about quitting; it’s also about feeling healthier and making lasting changes for a healthy, nicotine-free life.”
The top five tips to ease nicotine cravings:
1.Healthy snacks to keep your hands busy
Navigating the challenge of nicotine cravings requires mindful choices in food as well, especially when the urge for a cigarette strikes. By recognising that an empty mouth often craves a cigarette or disposable vape, opting for healthier snacks should become a key part of a smoke-free journey.
Vegetable sticks such as carrots, celery, cucumbers, and green peppers offer a satisfying and nutritious alternative. Additionally, sugar-free gum or sweets work well to fulfil cravings.
For some, cinnamon sticks can help ease cravings, acting as substitutes for cigarettes or vapes by keeping both the mouth and hands occupied during moments of temptation.
Sucking on cinnamon sticks delivers a quick hit of flavour and the familiar shape can help fulfil the psychological urge to smoke.
2 .Drinking plenty of herbal tea could be the key to quitting
Herbal teas can be a promising ally in the battle against nicotine cravings. These teas provide a nicotine-like stimulant effect, presenting individuals with a satisfying replacement for the habitual act of vaping or smoking.
Notably, research suggests that ginseng, found in certain herbal teas, may possess therapeutic properties for nicotine addiction by weakening the impact of dopamine, a pleasure-associated neurotransmitter released during smoking.
Similarly, green tea floods the system with micronutrients and amino acids, helping to reduce the urge to smoke. Research suggests it also helps to repair tissues damaged by smoking, helping to heal the whole body in the long run.
3.Meditation and breathing exercises to get you in the quitting headspace
Meditative breathing exercises can play a role in reducing nicotine cravings in three different ways:
Firstly, these exercises effectively reduce stress levels, providing individuals with a greater ability to control urges and minimise cravings.
Secondly, by improving mindfulness, individuals can become more attuned to their cravings, allowing them to make a conscious choice to ignore them rather than succumbing to old habits.
Lastly, meditative breathing exercises can contribute to the improvement of overall willpower and self-control - key elements that are essential for overcoming intense nicotine cravings.
4.Replace your bad habits with healthy ones – get into fitness
Engaging in regular exercise is a proven strategy for combating nicotine cravings, offering many different benefits on the journey to quitting.
Exercise not only encourages a heightened awareness of one's body but also serves as a powerful motivator to remain smoke-free. Smoking tends to make physical activity more challenging, creating a huge incentive to stay off tobacco.
Exercise also helps form positive habits, providing a healthier substitute for the ritual of stepping out for a vape or smoke. Try simple and short at-home exercise videos, as these are excellent ways to get physically active.
5.Create a reward system – you’ve really earned this
Establishing an external reward system is another useful strategy in the journey to quit nicotine. Nicotine activates the body's natural reward system, making it essential to substitute these rewards with healthier alternatives.
Setting milestones, such as using the money saved from not smoking for something enjoyable and health-promoting, can serve as positive reinforcement. This approach not only discourages spending money on smoking but also contributes to a sense of accomplishment and well-being.
In fact, research suggests, that the average 10-a-day smoker spends around £40 a week on tobacco – meaning savings of £2,000 a year can be made by quitting smoking, which is a fantastic incentive.