Archive | Smoking

Doctors' Diet/exercise Intervention Works

UMEA, Sweden, Sept. 14 (UPI) — Primary care physicians who work with at-risk patients to improve diet and exercise can lower diabetes and heart disease risk, researchers in Sweden say.

Margareta K. Eriksson of Bjorknas Health Care Center and Umea University in Sweden and colleagues say 71 patients were randomly assigned to the intervention, which included progressive exercise training three times a week, diet counseling and regular group meetings.

After three months, participants were invited to attend group meetings at regular intervals and encouraged to maintain at least 30 minutes per day of exercise. The control group of 74 people was given verbal and written information about exercise and diet at one group meeting.

Costs were $337 higher for the intervention group than for the control group. However, the average number of visits to the family physician decreased by 0.28 per six months among individuals in the intervention group, but the individuals in the control group made an average of 0.10 more visits per six months.

The study, published in the Archives of Internal Medicine, finds there was a savings of $384 for healthcare use and a net savings of $47 per intervention participant.

The intervention resulted in a favorable effect on physical activity, fitness, waist circumference, waist-to-hip ratio, blood pressure and smoking cessation over the three-year study period, the study authors say.

Copyright 2010 United Press International, Inc. (UPI). Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI’s prior written consent.

Posted in Other, Smoking0 Comments

Smokeless Tobacco Products Not 'safer'

CHICAGO, Sept. 14 (UPI) — Smokeless tobacco — snuff and chewing tobacco — is not a safer alternative to smoking and should not be used to quit smoking, U.S. researchers say.

Mariann Piano, lead writer of the smokeless tobacco policy statement of the American Heart Association, says smokeless tobacco should not be used as an alternative to cigarettes or for smoking cessation.

“No tobacco product is safe to consume,” Mariann Piano, a professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago, says in a statement. “Smokeless tobacco products are harmful and addictive – that does not translate to a better alternative.”

The idea that smokeless tobacco products may be a better alternative to cigarettes is based in part on the Swedish study that found men decreased smoking from 1976 to 2002, which corresponded to an increase in the use of smokeless tobacco.

However, a recent U.S. study found no reduction in smoking rates among people using smokeless tobacco products. Nicotine gum or a nicotine-releasing patch placed on the skin are safer alternatives compared to using smokeless tobacco products, Piano says.

Long-term use of smokeless tobacco products increases the risk of heart attack or fatal stroke, several studies have found, Piano said.

The study is published online in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association.

Copyright 2010 United Press International, Inc. (UPI). Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI’s prior written consent.

Posted in Other, Smoking0 Comments

Therapy Helpful in Addressing Loneliness

CHICAGO, Sept. 9 (UPI) — Cognitive-behavioral therapy was effective in addressing negative thoughts linked to loneliness — a risk factor for heart disease — U.S. researchers say.

John Cacioppo, a professor of psychology at the University of Chicago, says researchers recently characterized the negative influence of loneliness upon blood pressure, sleep quality, dementia and other health measures. The findings suggest loneliness is a health risk factor, similar to obesity or smoking.

The study, published online in Personality and Social Psychology Review, says changing how a person perceives and thinks about others was the most effective intervention for loneliness.

“People are becoming more isolated, and this health problem is likely to grow,” Cacioppo says in a statement. “If we know that loneliness is involved in health problems, the next question is what we can do to mitigate it.”

The researchers conducted a meta-analysis on loneliness interventions that involved four categories — improving social skills, increasing social support, creating opportunities for social interaction and addressing social cognition.

“Effective interventions are not so much about providing others with whom people can interact, providing social support, or teaching social skills as they are about changing how people who feel lonely perceive, think about, and act toward other people,” Cacioppo says.

Copyright 2010 United Press International, Inc. (UPI). Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI’s prior written consent.

Posted in Other, Smoking0 Comments

Therapy Helpful in Addressing Loneliness

CHICAGO, Sept. 9 (UPI) — Cognitive-behavioral therapy was effective in addressing negative thoughts linked to loneliness — a risk factor for heart disease – U.S. researchers say.

John Cacioppo, a professor of psychology at the University of Chicago, says researchers recently characterized the negative influence of loneliness upon blood pressure, sleep quality, dementia and other health measures. The finding suggest loneliness is a health risk factor, similar to obesity or smoking.

The study, published online in Personality and Social Psychology Review, says changing how a person perceives and thinks about others was the most effective intervention for loneliness.

“People are becoming more isolated, and this health problem is likely to grow,” Cacioppo says in a statement. “If we know that loneliness is involved in health problems, the next question is what we can do to mitigate it.”

The researchers conducted a meta-analysis on loneliness interventions that involved four categories — improving social skills, increasing social support, creating opportunities for social interaction and addressing social cognition.

“Effective interventions are not so much about providing others with whom people can interact, providing social support, or teaching social skills as they are about changing how people who feel lonely perceive, think about, and act toward other people,” Cacioppo says.

Copyright 2010 United Press International, Inc. (UPI). Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI’s prior written consent.

Posted in Other, Smoking0 Comments

More Education, Less Heart Risk, for Some

ATLANTA, Sept. 8 (UPI) — In high-income countries, the more education a person has, the lower the heart and stroke risk, U.S. researchers say.

However, the study, published in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association, finds highly educated women in low- and middle-income countries had a slight increase in the incidence of fatal and non-fatal heart attack and stroke.

This may be due to higher smoking rates in women with greater education levels in low-, middle- and high-income regions, the study says.

Smoking, which increases the risk of heart disease and stroke, typically declines as formal education rises, but researchers found nearly half of the highly educated women from high-income countries smoked, compared with 35 percent for those with the least amount of schooling.

In low- and middle-income countries, smoking rates among the most-educated women are 21 percent versus 14 percent among the least educated.

In men, smoking rates were almost the same across educational groups in low- and middle-income countries. In richer countries, the most-educated men smoked less than did men with the fewest years of formal education.

“We can’t assume that just because certain groups are more educated than others that they’re going to have healthier lifestyles,” the lead author, Dr. Abhinav Goyal of the Emory School of Medicine in Atlanta, said in a statement.

Copyright 2010 United Press International, Inc. (UPI). Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI’s prior written consent.

Posted in Education, Other, Smoking0 Comments

Sometimes Smoking Cessation is 'delayed'

PORTLAND, Ore., Sept. 7 (UPI) — U.S. researchers say some errant puffs cause some smokers to give up too soon on smoking cessation efforts.

Some quitters, the researchers say, are “delayed” and should not give up simply because they smoked after their quit date.

Researchers at Oregon Health & Science University in Portland suggest there are two types of successful quitters — those who quit immediately and remain abstinent and those who are delayed in attaining abstinence but achieve success by the end of treatment.

The study, published online in the journal Addiction, finds a substantial proportion of smokers who became successful quitters by the end of 12 weeks of treatment smoked in one or more weeks during the first eight weeks.

“Had treatment been interrupted or discontinued for these delayed quitters, opportunities for achieving continuous abstinence could have been lost for up to 45 percent of quitters who were ultimately successful,” study lead author David Gonzales says in a statement.

Copyright 2010 United Press International, Inc. (UPI). Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI’s prior written consent.

Posted in Other, Smoking0 Comments

Smoking Moms Take Large Toll on Babies

ATLANTA, Sept. 7 (UPI) — More than 1,000 U.S. babies die each year because of the effects of maternal smoking, the head of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said.

A CDC report released Tuesday finds 20 percent of U.S. adults smoke cigarettes, 40 percent of non-smokers were exposed to cigarette smoke during 2007-2008 and 90 million non-smoking Americans are exposed to secondhand smoke and have measurable levels of toxic chemicals from cigarette smoke.

“Virtually no kids who live with smokers — only 1 percent to 2 percent — actually are smoke-free when we test their blood for tobacco toxins caused by tobacco smoke,” Dr. Thomas R. Frieden, director of the CDC said in a telephone news conference. “This reminds us is that there really is no ventilation solution to smoke-free. You have to go smoke-free, whether it’s in a business or in a home. Smoke-free means no smoking anywhere.”

That 40-year decline in tobacco use in the United States stalled from 2005 to 2009, with no further reduction in tobacco use, Frieden said.

“Today and every day this year, more than 1,000 people will be killed by smoking,” Frieden said.

Strong state laws that protect against secondhand smoke, higher cigarette prices, aggressive ad campaigns that show smoking’s effects and well-funded tobacco control programs would decrease the number of adult smokers and save lives, Frieden said.

Copyright 2010 United Press International, Inc. (UPI). Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI’s prior written consent.

Posted in Chemicals, Other, Smoking0 Comments

Farmers/foresters: Healthiest Behaviors

WASHINGTON, Sept. 7 (UPI) — Farmers and foresters lead all occupations in healthy behaviors such as eating healthy and exercising, a U.S. survey indicates.

The Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index indicates farmers and foresters are also most likely to exercise for at least 30 minutes three or more days per week.

Construction workers and business owners are a distant second and third, respectively, while those in sales are the least likely to report healthy eating habits. Clerical and manufacturing workers have the lowest scores in the frequency of exercise.

Transportation workers have the highest level of obesity and the third-highest smoking rate, putting them at highest risk for developing chronic conditions such as diabetes and heart disease and making them more susceptible to cancer than workers in other occupations. Construction and installation workers have the highest smoking rates and fairly high obesity rates, while professionals have the lowest smoking and obesity rates, the survey indicates.

Business owners have the highest level of job satisfaction, while clerical workers have the lowest score on being able to use their strengths at work and those in manufacturing have the lowest job satisfaction.

The findings are based on more than 123,520 telephone interviews with national employed U.S. adults, conducted Jan. 2 to Aug. 19. The margin of error is 2 percentage points.

Copyright 2010 United Press International, Inc. (UPI). Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI’s prior written consent.

Posted in Other, Smoking, Transportation0 Comments

Smoking Role in Inflammation Explained

BIRMINGHAM, Ala., Sept. 6 (UPI) — Smoking shuts off a key enzyme in airways that regulates the body’s response to inflammation, U.S. researchers say.

The study, published online in Science Express ahead of print in the journal Science, finds smoke inhibits the enzyme — Leukotriene A4 Hydrolase. The shutdown means white blood cells are not stopped after successfully responding to inflammation.

University of Alabama at Birmingham researchers identified a previously unknown substrate of LTA4H — proline-glycine-proline. PGP recruits neutrophils — white blood cells — that rush to the scene and attack the cause of the inflammation. When the job is over, LTA4H shuts off PGP and ends the body’s neutrophils response.

“We found, however, that cigarette smoke inhibited LTA4H, preventing it from shutting down PGP,” J. Edwin Blalock said in a statement. “A continued presence of PGP means a continued response of neutrophils, a never-ending cycle that supports chronic inflammation.”

Blalock notes PGP is a biomarker for several lung diseases involving chronic inflammation including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and cystic fibrosis. Defining the role of PGP may have important ramifications for the design of new anti-inflammatory drugs.

Copyright 2010 United Press International, Inc. (UPI). Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI’s prior written consent.

Posted in Other, Smoking0 Comments

Veggie Variety May Lessen Lung Risk

UTRECHT, Netherlands, Sept. 1 (UPI) — Quitting smoking is the best way to prevent lung cancer but eating a variety of vegetables may help decrease lung cancer risk, Dutch researchers say.

Dr. H. Bas Bueno-de-Mesquita of The National Institute for Public Health and the Environment in the Netherlands says smokers in particular may lower their risks of squamous cell lung cancer by adding a variety of fruits and vegetables to their diets.

The study, published in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention, finds the risk of lung cancer decreased when a variety of vegetables were consumed. In addition, the risk of squamous cell carcinoma decreased substantially when a variety of fruits and vegetables were eaten, the study says.

“Although quitting smoking is the most important preventive action in reducing lung cancer risk, consuming a mix of different types of fruit and vegetables may also reduce risk, independent of the amount, especially among smokers,” Bueno-de-Mesquita says in a statement.

Bueno-de-Mesquita and colleagues evaluated 452,187 participants with complete information — 1,613 diagnosed with lung cancer — all participants in the ongoing, multi-centered European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition.

Copyright 2010 United Press International, Inc. (UPI). Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI’s prior written consent.

Posted in Other, Smoking0 Comments

No Posts in Category
Advertisement