Cigarettes, as well as other tobacco products, contain large amounts of nicotine. Nicotine is an addictive drug, so quitting smoking can cause a person to physically and emotionally crave it. Foods that reduce nicotine cravings need to provide oral gratification as well as a good taste to stimulate the taste buds. It is very difficult to quit smoking and attempting to quit requires determination as well as the right foods. Will power falls through when the mind tells the body it still craves the feel of a cigarette. The dopamine receptor sites of the brain trigger euphoria caused by nicotine. This feeling still is desired by the person even months after quitting.
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Water helps to stop the cravings of nicotine quickly. Smoking cessation programs typically encourage drinking large amounts of water. It lessens the desire to smoke and helps the body forget the euphoria it experienced with nicotine. Drinking six to eight glasses of water each day will help reduce nicotine cravings.
Chewing gum helps to replace the oral fixation that occurs when a person smokes a cigarette. It helps lessen the urge to want the nicotine found in a cigarette. It gives the teeth and mouth something to do. Chewing various brands of gum that taste good will help desensitize the desire for the nicotine.
Hard candy helps to replace the urge to smoke and helps curb the desire for nicotine. Although hard candy is not a nutritious food, it is easily available and lessens the load of having to find a natural food product right away when the urge begins, the Mayo Clinic reports. Lollipops are another way for the person to hold something while eating hard candy, simulating the act of holding the cigarette.
Nutritious snacks, such as fresh fruits and crunchy vegetables, will reduce the desire for nicotine, according to experts at the Mayo Clinic. Replacing the nicotine in the body with nutritious foods will make a person feel better and healthier. Feeling better takes away from the desire to smoke. Keeping fruits in a bowl nearby may give a person a sense of security for replacement of the cigarette.
Snacks, such as nuts, sunflower seeds and low-fat vegetable chips, should be eaten in moderation, but will help in the reduction of the cravings for cigarettes. Vegetable chips are available in organic sections of the various food chains. Alternating these snacks with other nutritious foods will limit the boredom of eating the same foods repeatedly.