Almost deaths in all countries are due to cigarettes smoking. Everyone knows that smoking can cause cancer when you get older, but did you know that it also has bad effects on your body right now? A cigarette contains about 4000 chemicals, many of which are poisonous. There is no safe 'low tar' cigarette and no safe level of smoking.
Some of the worst ones are:
- Nicotine: a deadly poison
- Arsenic: used in rat poison
- Methane: a component of rocket fuel
- Ammonia: found in floor cleaner
- Cadmium: used in batteries
- Carbon Monoxide: part of car exhaust
- Formaldehyde: used to preserve body tissue
- Butane: lighter fluid
- Hydrogen Cyanide: the poison used in gas chambers
The total number of smokers increased slightly from 2001 to 2007, with 49.87% of males being smokers in 2007, although there was a drop in female smokers between 2006 and 2007 from 18.88% to 18.26%. (Euro monitor International: Insight on Tobacco, Malaysia)
A twenty-a-day smoker, aged 30, who started smoking at around 16 has already breathed a kilo of tar into their lungs. ( US Department of Health and Human Services 1989).
A smoker is 10 times more likely to develop lung cancer. Heavy smokers are 15 to 25 times more at risk than non-smokers (US Department of Health and Human Services, 1982).
And 85% of all male cases and 77% of female cases of lung cancer are related to smoking (English DR, Holman CDJ, Milne E, Winter MG, Hulse GK, Codde JP, Bower CI, Corti B, de Klerk N, Knuiman MW, Kurinczuk JJ, Lewin GF, Ryan GA., 1995).
Every time you inhale smoke from a cigarette, you kill some of the air sacks in your lungs, called alveoli. These air sacks are where the oxygen that you breathe in is transferred into your blood. Alveoli don't grow back, so when you destroy them, you have permanently destroyed part of your lungs. This means that you won't do as well in activities where breathing is important, like sports, dancing, or singing.
Smoking paralyzes the cilia that line your lungs. Cilia are little hairlike structures that move back and forth to sweep particles out of your lungs. When you smoke, the cilia can't move and can't do their job. So dust, pollen, and other things that you inhale sit in your lungs and build up. Also, there are a lot of particles in smoke that get into your lungs. Since your cilia are paralyzed because of the smoke and can't clean them out, the particles sit in your lungs and form tar.
Male smokers may produce less sperm and their sperm may have more abnormalities than non-smokers. Women who smoke are more likely to have a miscarriage (2). Several studies have found that women who smoke have decreased fertility. Of these, one study has found that smokers have about 72% of the fertility of non-smokers (Baird D, Wilcox A. Cigarette smoking associated with delayed conception. JAMA 1985; 253: 2979-2983).
Smoking reduces life expectancy by 7 - 8 years. That means, each cigarette shortens the life of the smoker by around 8 minutes.
Women smokers who use the pill increase their risk of a heart attack, stroke, and other cardiovascular diseases by about ten times (Millberger S, Biederman J, Faraone S et al. 'Is maternal smoking during pregnancy a risk factor for attention-deficit disorder in children?').
Over 57, 000 reports worldwide have examined the link between cigarette smoking and disease, making it the most researched cause of disease ever investigated in the history of Biomedical Research (US Department of Health and Human Services, 1989).
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