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Pregnant looking belly

By Anonymous June 25, 2015 - 5:55am
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My stomach is so big that I look pregnant...I'm 58 yrs old and having problems breathing because of it...I can't find clothes to fit because my stomach is so big....I currently weigh 203....I never been this big since I quit smoking...It seems when I quit the lbs kept coming and right to my stomach...What can I do to get my stomach down to normal....HELP

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Hello Anonymous,

Welcome to EmpowHER. I can appreciate how you must feel. At our age, I am 58 years old, dropping those extra pounds isn't as easy as it once was. It must be frustrating that the consequence of doing the right thing-quit smoking-is gaining weight!

Here are some facts that can help you understand why this is happening. Hopefully, with some lifestyle changes, you might be able to get the pounds off.

Nicotine from tobacco boosts the body's metabolic rate, increasing the number of calories it burns. Immediately after you smoke a cigarette, your heart rate increases by 10 to 20 beats a minute.

Once you quit smoking, your metabolic rate quickly returns to normal. That's a healthy change. But if you are still consuming same number of calories as before, you put on pounds.

Try cutting back on your portions. Eat more fruits and vegetables. Consume whole grain products rather than products made with refined white flour.

Exercise regularly. Begin with walking and work your way up. Choose an activity you enjoy, like dancing. A Swiffer mop makes a great dance partner:)

When smokers quit, nicotine isn't all they crave. They also discover that they miss the habit of lighting a cigarette and putting it to their mouths. Many smokers turn to food to satisfy this so-called need for "oral gratification." Carrot or celery sticks are a healthy and low calorie alternative.

You might find this article, "Belly fat in women: Taking — and keeping — it off" helpful.http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/womens-health/in-depth/belly-fat/art-20045809


June 25, 2015 - 8:46am
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