How I Quit Smoking! Five Years and Counting!

23 Oct

My Story:

I started smoking when I was 11 and I’m not going to lie, I LOVED it! I never wanted to quit smoking, I swore up and down I would never do it! I thought they would have to pry the cigarettes from my cold dead hands and all of that dramatic nonsense. And when I got out of breath quickly I told myself I was out of shape, I totally refused to admit that smoking was taking a toll on my body.

Then one day I woke up with really swollen ankles and they became more and more painful each day. Next thing I knew it was really difficult for me to even walk. No one knew what this affliction was and it took six months of specialists visits and tests until I finally ended up in the office of a respiratory specialist. It was his theory that I had a disorder called Sarcoidosis. This affliction can result in the sudden extreme swelling of different organs. Most commonly the lungs. I could wake up any morning with the crazy swelling that I had in my ankles in my lungs. Except that I wouldn’t wake up because that would kill me, pretty much instantly. Kind of scary. I was then told that if I didn’t quit smoking immediately I would need a lung transplant within a year.

Pretty scary stuff! I was only 26 at the time and not quite ready for someone to pry the cigarettes from my cold dead hand. The lung doctor gave me a list of vitamins to take. One in particular stopped me from smoking. Niacin or vitamin B3 (it’s the same thing) completely soothed my cigarette cravings and I was able to stop. I actually got to a point where I craved the vitamins rather than cigarettes!

I am not a doctor and I recommend that if you want to try this that you talk to a doctor like I did but I tell you it does work.

I do think that it’s important to note here that I had tried in my life to quit smoking countless times before this. None of my attempts ever worked. Without niacin the longest I ever lasted without smoking was 3 months. I have never smoked again. I do have to admit that I do crave every once in a while still. I probably always will. But It’s not hard to ignore cravings now. If I can do this I know that you can too.

What to do:

Here’s what my doctor told me to do: You have to get the kind of Niacin that causes flushing or hot flashes. It is the hot flash that cancels the nicotine craving. I started with a100mg pill three times a day. Once I got to a point where it no longer caused a hot flash I increased to 200mg three times a day then 300mg three times a day.  My doctor told me to work all the way up to 1000mg three times a day. I had to stay at 1000mg 3x a day for about three months and then I was officially a non-smoker.

I had the best luck finding flushing Niacin at vitamin stores or health food stores.

What to expect:

Niacin causes a flushing sensation in your skin. Your skin will feel hot and tingle. Your skin will turn red and possibly get white patches mostly around your throat and chest. This flush usually lasts 5-20 minutes. Your heart may beat a little faster and you might get a little jittery.

It will still take will power. You still have to consciously take the vitamin instead of smoke. It will still be hard work and at times a struggle but the Niacin, for me, made it so much easier.

!!!DO NOT DO THIS!!!

Do not take 1000mg 3x a day to start! Sometimes it can be hard to find 100mg pills but really easy to find 1000mg pills don’t try to skip right up to the 1000mg ones! The hot flash will be almost unbearable. I know because I did try. It was really uncomfortable, I strongly recommend against it.

When I was researching it I did come across a few warnings that said that a few people have had heart attacks or seizures from over doing Niacin. This is a very powerful vitamin! Do not underestimate what it can do to your body.

Do not smoke when you are taking these pills. If you smoke than your body will not learn the difference between the cigarettes and the vitamins as quickly or possibly at all. When the time comes to take your pill decide for just that day (at least) you won’t smoke. If you wake up and you know you are going to smoke don’t take the vitamin and just start tomorrow instead.

Why it works:

Again I’m not a doctor this is just my own opinion from the research I did when I was doing this. I think that the nicotine in cigarettes mimics or is identical to nicotinamide which is a vitamin your body needs in order to feel happy. When a person has low levels of vitamin B or nicotinamide and they happen to start smoking the body thinks that they are getting what they need through the cigarettes but in reality they are just getting something similar which is harmful instead of beneficial. The body never gets the relief that it would from the vitamin but still thinks that the cigarette is a good source of the vitamin so it constantly craves it. When you substitute the actual vitamin that your body is craving your body finally feels relief because it is getting what it needs and so it stops craving the cigarettes and starts craving the vitamins instead.

I think that stress burns up these vitamins in your body and the reason that a person never stops craving cigarettes is that they never stop needing these vitamins to feel happy. So I would recommend that whenever a person starts to crave cigarettes after they have quit they should just take some more B3 or Niacin until the cravings subside.

History:

The practice of taking large doses of vitamins to cure disease is not new but it is controversial. It’s called orthomlecular medicine or mega vitamin treatment. It has been used for treating heart disease with vitamin C. Linus Pauling is credited with the discovery of this amazing practice. Some people may say that there is no proof that taking vitamins has any effect at all. I say that I am living proof of just what vitamins can do for a person.

 

18 thoughts on “How I Quit Smoking! Five Years and Counting!

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  3. Too much Niacin can cause liver damage and nerve toxticity. I got nerve toxticity from 100 mg of b complex a day. I heard a 50 mg b – complex with oats twice daily for a couple days before you quit and then keep taking both can help dramatically but eventually you should not need b vitamins as non smokers do just fine without a b complex.

    • I find this interesting and terrible! I’m sorry to hear that you had such bad luck with B vitamins! I appreciate you commenting. It just goes to show that what works for one may not always work for another. It is just such an important reminder for people to always check things with their doctor and always listen to what ther body is telling them. For myself even six years after quitting I still need to take a b complex every single day. It helps me control my mood and as a result my weight and food cravings.

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  5. The only way in which Niacin helps ANYONE quit smoking is through them believing it is helping them quit. And just because the Niacin molcule is molecularly similar to nicotine’s structure this does not mean it has ANY of the same effects, traits, or interactions – in fact chemicals with almost identical molecular structures can have the entire opposite effect or perhaps a dangerous outcome if someone was to use it simply based on it’s structural similarity.

    Niacin (Nicotinamide) does not even bind to the Nicotinic receptors so how could it possibly satisfy anything to do with the body’s requirement for Nicotine. And Nicotinamide has NOTHING to do with someone’s wellbeing or happiness, what kind of crap are you typing in this article

    The chemical that DOES work for stopping smoking is acetylcholine. Acetylcholine is a neurotransmitter. It transmits nerve impulses from nerve to nerve via receptors at nerve endings – with this effect alone it would be worth taking for smokers as nerve endings get damaged over the years from smoking. But it doesn’t stop there acetylcholine is the complete cure. Doctors won’t tell you this, it is’t because of some conspiracy or that they don’t know, although some naturally won’t know, but is to do with the pharmaceutical industries influence on a Doctors prescribing. Anyway…

    Nicotine attaches itself to the Acetylcholine receptor, this is what happen when people smoke cigarettes. It completely satisfies the Acetylcholine receptors just like a cigarette as well as having its more publicised and studied uses for slowing aging down, and being good for smooth muscle tone and skin tone.

    • There has been recent research that has shown GPCRs may be coupled and interact with nAChRs, specifically alpha 7 containing receptors, Adam. It is well known in the literature that nicotinic acid (niacin) binds to Gi containing GPCRs and specifically HM74. This means that niacin may well have a role in influencing signalling through nAChRs and influence addictive behaviors. Additionally, niacin is being studied for it’s effectiveness in cognitive disorders and has had a high success rate in schizophrenic patients and further in individuals with anxiety and depression. Before you make broad sweeping generalizations, you might want to look into the literature with a bit more scrutiny and humility. You might just find some “crap” that will change your opinions.

      • Wow! Thank you for your opinion James! The previous comment had made me feel a little bad about writing the article which of course is just based on my opinion and personal experience and in no way a substitution for medical advice. All the same though niacin really did help me significantly.

  6. What specifically is the “flushing” kind – I have only been able to find “no flush” Niacin. What do the ingredients indicate?

    • I’m sure of any specific brands anymore. The way that I used to find out if it was the flushing variety is that there would usually be a warning on the label usually on the back of the bottle under the ingredients it would state that this product would cause flushing. Good luck. 🙂

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