The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

Enid Features

October 23, 2013

Light smoking, cigars: Still risky

James always gives an emphatic “no” when health professionals ask if he is a smoker. He has been a happy and smug non-smoker for longer than 30 years, and he sometimes tends to forget that he once smoked a pipe and even a few cigarettes and cigars.  I didn’t inhale, he tells himself. I never smoked very often and I was never addicted. When I decided to start exercising, I simply decided not to smoke any more.

James’ decision was a smart one, and it probably tacked about 10 years onto his lifespan.  But does his cloudy past as a light and intermittent smoker make any difference to his present and future health?    

The word often given to current smokers is that it’s never too late to reap the benefits. And that’s generally true. Within a few hours, carbon monoxide levels in the blood decline while heart rate and blood pressure return to normal. Within a few months, an ex-smoker can expect improved circulation and lung function.   Does that mean your body is forgiving you for all the toxins you have exposed it to over the years? Well, maybe not completely.

PAST SMOKING

Ex-smokers are less likely than current ones to die of a smoking-related disease such as lung cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disorders or heart disease. But, like those who have never smoked, they still get those diseases and die.    

In one study of 600 patients referred for lung cancer surgery, 16 percent had been smoke-free for 20 to 30 years, and 21 percen; smoke-free for 10 to 20 years. Only 11 percent were current smokers.    

Probably more important than the number of years since you stopped smoking is the age at which you quit. According to a study published in The Lancet, women who quit smoking before age 40 avoided 90 percent of the risk of early death while those who quit before 30 avoided 97 percent.

Text Only
Enid Features
  • Judy rupp.jpg Top 10 foods you can eat for longevity

    Top 10 lists are always fun. And what better topic than foods that will help you live a longer, healthier life?

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Vculek, Verba.jpg Vculek, 90

    Verba Jane Vculek will celebrate her 90th birthday with an open house from 2-4 p.m. Sunday, April 27, 2014, at the Marshall Alumni Hall on Main Street. Cards may be sent to 25199 N. Rockwell Ave., Marshall, OK 73056.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • peggy goodrich.jpg What's in a name?

    This dessert has a strange name and may deter you, but it is easy to make and fun this time of year.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Crabbs, Thelma.jpg Crabbs, 102

    Thelma L. Crabbs will celebrate her 102nd birthday with family. Cards may be sent to Greenbrier Assisted Living, 1217 E. Garriott, Room 102, Enid, OK 73701.

    April 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Jessica Nickels Sun. Life mug.jpg Extension helped start school lunch program

    Nutrition is constantly a hot topic, and we as Extension educators are always educating consumers on new research as it is available.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Datebook for 4/20/14

    April 19, 2014

  • Judy rupp.jpg Wear shades and save your eyesight

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • peggy goodrich.jpg Are you hungry for knowledge?

    I am so pleased that Enid and other cities are offering “Lifelong Learning.” It consists of classes on current events, art appreciation, psychology, our government and other interesting topics.

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • denny.krick.80th.jpg Krick, 80

    Dr. Denny Krick will celebrate his 80th birthday in Branson, Mo., from April 17-21. Cards may be sent to 2610 Indian Dr., Enid, OK 73703.

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • Mary.Oller.90th.jpg Oller, 90

    Mary Oller will celebrate her 90th birthday with family on Saturday, April 19. Cards may be sent to 3219 W. Cherokee, Enid, OK 73703.

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

Featured Ads
AP Video
SKorea Ferry Toll Hits 156, Search Gets Tougher Video Shows Possible Syrian Gas Attack Cubs Superfans Celebrate Wrigley's 100th Raw: Cattle Truck Overturns in Texas Admirers Flock to Dole During Kansas Homecoming Raw: Erupting Volcanoes in Guatemala and Peru Alibaba IPO Could Be Largest Ever for Tech Firm FBI Joining Probe of Suburban NY 'Swatting' Call U.S. Paratroopers in Poland, Amid Ukraine Crisis US Reviews Clemency for Certain Inmates Raw: Violence Erupts in Rio Near Olympic Venue Raw: Deadly Bombing in Egypt Raw: What's Inside a Commercial Jet Wheel Well Raw: Obama Arrives in Japan for State Visit Raw: Anti-Obama Activists Fight Manila Police Motels Near Disney Fighting Homeless Problem Michigan Man Sees Thanks to 'bionic Eye' S.C. Man Apologizes for Naked Walk in Wal-Mart Chief Mate: Crew Told to Escape After Passengers
NDN Video
Michael Strahan's First Day on "GMA" Amazon's Deal With HBO Leapfrogs Streaming Rivals Stephen Colbert Tells David Letterman His Plan for 'Late Show' Georgetown police officer filmed tripping students Viral: It's Not Pitbull - It's Amy Poehler! Recycling Highlights for Earth Day Lupita Nyong'o Named People's 'Most Beautiful' Peeps Launched into Outer Space NYPD's Twitter Request For Photos Backfires New HBO Go Commercials Capture Awkward Family TV Watching Raw: Leopard Bites Man in India Rise of the Milkbots Jenna Dewan-Tatum Strips Down TRENDING: Brian Williams Raps 'Gin and Juice' on ‘Tonight Show’ Middle School heroes rescue students from burning bus WHOPPER OF FISHING STORY: Florida man catches massive Mako shark Maks Chmerkovskiy's "DWTS" Meltdown The many faces of Mike Woodson Ape Builds A Fire And Toasts Marshmallows In Amazing BBC Video Manchester Utd sack manager David Moyes
House Ads
Comics