Clove Cigarettes Health Effects
The last post helped you understand why you started smoking, how you became addicted, and why it can be so difficult to quit. In your heart, you know that it's time to free yourself of your dependence on cigarettes. That's why you are reading this blog. You can't ignore the fire in your gut that is telling you to break the addiction. This post, which focuses on the health consequences of smoking, will help add fuel to that fire. And you're going to need that fuel to help internalize your desire for change – a critical part of the foundation of your success.
MORE THAN A BAD HABIT
In 1964, U.S. Surgeon General Luther Terry submitted his landmark report on smoking and health. The report implicated cigarette smoking as a cause of lung and larynx (voice box) cancer in men and a suspected cause of lung cancer in women. Smoking was also cited as a cause of chronic bronchitis in both sexes. This report marked the first official significant step in raising public awareness of the health ramifications of tobacco smoking. In the decades preceding the report, smoking was actually touted as being good for you – and tobacco companies, with their deep pockets, paid advertisers handsomely to aggressively spread the word. Doctors were often spotlighted in ads, puffing away on cigarettes or holding up packs, while claiming that they helped you relax, or aided digestion, or made you feel refreshed.
That first Surgeon General's report kick-started what would become a long, but significant road in the development of anti-smoking campaigns, research coalitions, and information clearinghouses. On behalf of public health, the first warning label to appear on cigarette packs – "CAUTION: CIGARETTE SMOKING MAY BE HARMFUL TO YOUR HEALTH" – was a direct result of this milestone report.
After 1964, mounting medical research and scientific investigation began to uncover an ever-growing number of diseases and conditions associated with smoking. Soon, cigarettes were no longer linked solely to cancer and cancer of the larynx. They were implicated in cardiovascular disease, compromised reproduction, and cancers of the bladder, esophagus, mouth, and throat.
In 2004, forty years after that first report, Surgeon General Richard H. Carmona released The Health Consequences of Smoking, a comprehensive work that was prepared by nearly two dozen top doctors, scientists, and public health experts over the course of three years. The report concluded that smoking has a negative effect on just about every organ of the body. It conclusively linked smoking to such conditions and diseases as cataracts, pneumonia, acute myeloid leukemia, periodontitis, and cancers of the stomach, pancreas, cervix, and kidney.
According to Dr. Carmona, "The toxins from cigarette smoke go everywhere the blood flows." The report concluded that "Smoking remains the leading cause of preventable death and has negative health impacts on people at all stages of life. It harms unborn babies, infants, children, adolescents, adults, and seniors."
The adverse health consequences from smoking cigarettes are implicated in over 400,000 deaths each year in the United States. That's an amazing one in every five deaths! Later in this blog, you will be taking a closer look at how cigarette smoke compromises health. After all, if you are currently a smoker, this information is directly related to you. But first, it's important to understand the ingredients contained in cigarette smoke.
What's in That Cigarette Smoke?
To better understand why cigarette smoking has such a strong negative impact on health, let's take a look at what is actually in tobacco smoke.
Boasting an impressive array of "villains," cigarette smoke contains over 4,000 chemicals, including more than 60 known carcinogenic (cancer-causing) substances. The content and concentration of these chemicals vary, depending on a variety of factors, including the brand or type of cigarette.
The following list contains just a fraction of the harmful contents found in tobacco smoke:
- Acetone. Highly reactive chemical often used as a cleaning agent and paint stripper.
- Arsenic. Poisonous metallic element used in insecticides and weed killers.
- Benzene. Flammable petroleum-derived liquid used in cleaning products and gasoline.
- Butadiene. Flammable hydrocarbon, derived from petroleum and used in the manufacture of synthetic rubber products.
- Carbon monoxide. Colorless, odorless, toxic gas contained in vehicle exhaust.
- Cyanide. Poisonous chemical compound used in gas chambers for executions in the United States.
- DDT. Colorless toxic insecticide.
- Dieldrin. Highly hazardous chemical used in insecticides.
- Formaldehyde. Gaseous compound used in the manufacture of dyes, fertilizers, and embalming fluids.
- Lead. Metallic element found in paint, solder, and certain types of glass.
- Napthalene. Carcinogenic hydrocarbon derived from coal tar or petroleum. Commonly used as a solvent and to make mothballs.
- Styrene. Oily compound used to make plastics such as polystyrene (Styrofoam).
- Vinyl chloride. Flammable gas used in the production of plastics.
Cigarette smoke also contains tar – the sticky brown substance made up of the particles and harmful byproducts of tobacco. It is tar that stains the teeth, fingernails, and lungs. Another major ingredient is nicotine, which is contained in the moisture of the tobacco leaf. When the cigarette is lit, the nicotine evaporates and attaches itself to minute droplets in the tobacco smoke. Nicotine is not cancer-causing, but it is toxic. It is also highly addictive, which is the main reason people continue to smoke.
Finally, don't kid yourself into thinking that low-tar or low-nicotine cigarettes offer health benefits over regular, full-flavored varieties. According to the 2004 Surgeon General's report, "There is no safe cigarette, whether it is called 'light,' 'ultra-light,' or any other name. The science is clear: the only way to avoid the hazards of smoking is to quit completely or to never start smoking."
Now be honest with yourself. If you walked into a room and the air was filled with pesticides and other poisonous chemicals, would you close the door behind you and willingly take a deep breath? Of course not. Well, that's exactly what you are doing every time you puff on a cigarette. To find out more, you can check out Clove Cigarettes Health Effects.