I have to admit that sometimes I still have cravings...even within the last few minutes. I don't suppose that's going to go away instantly. Sometimes the urges are stronger than others, but they never last for very long. I just have to find something to do to occupy my mind and my hands and it passes within a few minutes.
Besides being able to breathe better, here's another benefit to being a non-smoker: my husband hugs me closer and tighter! The smell always offended him, but now I smell good and he likes to get close. That's a great perk!
I still have not had any bad side effects from taking the Chantix. All is well in my brain...or at least as well as it was when I started. lol
Now, since I'm getting healthier with quitting smoking, my next thing to tackle is my weight. My new general practice doctor that I started seeing seems to know more about my psychiatric medications than my psychiatrist does. Turns out that one of the meds I'm on has another use...they give it to anorexia patients to make them crave sugary carbs in order to gain weight! Holly sheet! That could explain a few things. About a month ago I switched to drinking diet Mountain Dew, which instantly took about 5,000 calories a week out of my diet. I feel great about that and my doctor was very proud of me for it. But I know I still have things I need to work on.
I don't want to go on any fad diets. I don't want to do Atkin's again. I don't want to count points. I want to make gradual lifestyle changes that my whole family can adopt and maintain for the long run. Since I stopped smoking I now have an extra $25 a week that I can spend on healthier foods, like fresh fruits and vegetables. This week the change I'm going to make is a switch to brown rice and using olive oil. I found a brown rice recipe that sounds absolutely delicious that I'm going to try. It's got shredded carrots and zucchini, sunflower seeds, almond slivers, and red pepper flakes. I read the reviews from people who have tried it and they were glowing. Some of them made their own little modifications like adding different vegetables or different nuts. Some added onion or garlic. I'm going to try it as is first, and then I'll decide if I want to modify next time. I rarely fry my foods, but I decided I should splurge on the much more expensive olive oil for those times that I do. These are two healthy but easy changes that I can make and maintain. Oh, and I forgot. A few weeks ago I also converted my family to eating whole wheat pasta. They love it! And at Super Wal-Mart it costs about the same as regular pasta. Another easy change! I've used the whole wheat for spaghetti, tuna noodle casserole and even one of our favorites, bowtie pasta salad. Now I don't feel as bad about eating pasta.
My doctor told me I need to stay away from potatoes. That will be a tough one. It will take a while to work on that one I think. I found an interesting recipe for mashed cauliflower that is like mashed potatoes. Maybe with some garlic and a little cheese it might be pretty good. One of these days I'll try that one.
But a few other problem areas are: cereal, portion size, snacks, I like to bake treats, and I don't eat regularly throughout the day. I'll work on all these a little at a time.
Also, since I can breathe better I am now motivated to start walking and getting a little exercise. I don't have sneakers, and it's hard to find shoes for me because my feet are very wide. But I discovered a brand online through Woman Within, an awesome plus size site, that is also sold at Sear's called Propet. They have W and extra W widths. When our tax refund comes in I'm going to go get a pair. And literally start walking my butt off! :)