Feeling the pang of a cigarette craving? Perhaps taking a jog or heading to the gym may help, Reuters reports.
New research shows there may be a connection between exercise and decreased nicotine cravings. Researchers found that a bout of exercise generally helped hopeful quitters to cut down their nicotine cravings.
Whether exercise can truly translate into quitting the habit is yet to be seen. But if it does help cravings for those wanting to kick smoking, researchers say it can’t hurt.
“Certainly, exercise seems to have temporary benefits, and as such can be strongly recommended,” Adrian A. Taylor, a professor of exercise and health psychology at the University of Exeter in the UK, tells Reuters in an email.
But, in an attempt to answer the elusive question: “Can exercise help smokers quit?” Taylor and his colleagues recently reviewed 15 clinical trials on the question for the Cochrane Collaboration. The Collaboration is an international research organization that evaluates medical evidence.
Only one of those studies, Taylor said, suggested that exercise may boost quit rates in the span of one year. There are still issues with the findings, however. Most of the studies had major limitations, like including only a handful of participants.
Taylor hopes in the future, better evidence will become available.
“Large, good-quality studies are underway,” he said.
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