Smoking continues to be the leading cause of preventable death in the USA, despite the vast and widely publicized knowledge about the negative health effects of tobacco smoking. Data show that smoking cessation is often accompanied by weight gain and an improvement in insulin sensitivity over time. However, paradoxically, post-cessation-related obesity might contribute to insulin resistance. Furthermore, post-cessation weight gain is reportedly the number one reason why smokers, especially women, fail to initiate smoking cessation or relapse after initiating smoking cessation. In this Review, we discuss the metabolic effects of stopping smoking and highlight future considerations for smoking cessation programs and therapies to be designed with an emphasis on reducing post-cessation weight gain.