How effective are exercise-based interventions for smoking cessation?
Only one of the 15 trials offered evidence for exercise aiding smoking cessation at a 12-month follow-up. All the other trials were too small (7 had fewer than 25 people in each treatment arm) to reliably exclude an effect of intervention, or included an exercise intervention which was insufficiently intense to achieve the desired level of exercise. The studies varied in the timing and intensity of the smoking cessation and exercise programmes.
Taking regular exercise may help people give up smoking by moderating nicotine withdrawal and cravings, and by helping to manage weight gain.