There is a long list of lifestyle changes you can make to get healthier this year. Improving your diet, drinking more water, getting more exercise, building lean muscle, regular chiropractic care, stretching often, doing meditation – the list goes on and on. But probably at the top of the list would be quitting smoking.
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reports tobacco use is the number one cause of preventable death and disease in the United States. Tobacco-related causes of death include heart disease, lung cancer, cancers of the mouth, pharynx , and esophagus, and chronic disorders of the respiratory system, such as emphysema.
The CDC estimates that “smoking caused approximately 440, 000 premature deaths in the United States annually, and approximately $157 billion in annual health related economic losses.”
The good news?
When you quit smoking, your body instantly goes to work at repairing the damage done by years of smoking.
But how early you quit can make a big difference.
A recent study found that the earlier you quit smoking the more potential years of life expectancy you will have. Meaning the younger you are when you quit , the better your odds at living longer.
Quitting before age 35 adds a potential 10 years of life yielding a life expectancy similar to those who had never smoked.
Quitting later in life still has benefit, though not as much. The study showed that ceasing smoking after age 50 yielded six extra years of life.
How do I quit?
Chances are you’ve tried before and failed. That’s okay! There are a number of resources and aids to assist you in being successful:
“It doesn’t matter where you start. Just start.” – Smokefree.gov
- Talk to your chiropractor/healthcare provider. Consult with them on advice on where to start.
- Make your plan to quit using the free QUITPLAN® provided by the state of Minnesota. This includes a starter kit with gum, lozenges, and patches; text messaging, and email program, and Quit guide to help you on your journey of quitting smoking.
- Use the resources from the CDC itself. They offer an “I’m ready to quit!” tool consisting of live phone support, a guide to quitting smoking, mobile app, and a texting program that offers 24/7 encouragement, advice, and tips right to your phone .
Ready to get started?
Call us at 651-406-4454
Annual smoking-attributable mortality, years of potential life lost, and economic costs–United States, 1995-1999.
MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2002 Apr 12;51(14):300-3. (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12002168 abstract accessed online 2/25/16)
Doll, R. Mortality in relation to smoking: 50 years’ observations on male British doctors. British Medical Journal, June 22, 2004, online edition. (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15213107 abstract accessed online 2/25/26)