Physical activity practice to mitigate withdrawal syndrome in smoking cessation
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Spanish Association Against Cancer in Albacete, Spain
Spanish Association Against Cancer, Spain
Publication date: 2023-04-25
Corresponding author
Eva María Valero Parra   

Spanish Association Against Cancer in Albacete, Spain
Tob. Prev. Cessation 2023;9(Supplement):A67
Physical health is closely linked to mental health and has many benefits. It reduces the feeling of stress and increases the feeling of optimism, euphoria and cognitive flexibility. It helps self-regulation, so that its practice reduces the intensity of emotions such as anger, aggression, anxiety and depression. Reduces the feeling of fatigue, so that the person feels more energetic and rested, with greater work capacity. All these characteristics make the practice of physical exercise a facilitating element in smoking cessation to counteract the effects of abstinence syndrome. For this reason, we have incorporated in our smoking cessation program a collective challenge called Camino de Santiago with which we seek to encourage through gamification the practice of regular physical exercise to test its effects on smoking cessation.

Material and Methods:
In the initial interview, before starting the program, we recorded smoking history and also the level of physical activity through the RAPA questionnaire. Throughout the duration of the program, the Discover ADIDAS runner app was used to measure the number of kilometers walked and the adherence to the challenge. At the end of the year, we follow up on the people who have taken the course to see if they have been able to stay smoke-free.

The success rate of the smoking cessation program in the rest of the teams is 60%. In the case of this program, the success rate was 65%. The number of people who remained smoke-free months after the program was very similar between those who had participated in the challenge and those who had not. However, the 70% who stated that they had not managed to quit smoking or had managed to reduce their consumption were among those who had not participated in the physical activity challenge.

While we cannot be certain that the improvement in the success rate of the program was due to the inclusion of the physical activity challenge, we believe that it was a useful tool for some individuals to quit smoking.

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