01 Jan Smoking Cessation Buys a Tropical Vacation
Are you riding the wave of addiction? Are you still using tobacco but looking for enough reasons to quit? Do you ever wonder if it would really make a difference at this point in your life? Are you contemplating starting smoking because so many of your friends light up? You think, “I’m young, it’s not going to hurt me and besides, I can quit anytime I want to”. Yes you can quit, but tobacco use is an addiction and quitting isn’t as easy as it may seem. The best action is to never start. However, for current smokers, let’s look at the reasons to quit and the benefits of why tobacco cessation is beneficial. And ultimately smoking cessation can buy you a tropical vacation!
Reason to Quit
Your risk of heart disease is doubled if you smoke. Twenty percent of all deaths in the United States are related to smoking; along with about thirty-three percent from cancer, which includes all kinds: Lung cancer, mouth and throat cancer, cancers of the kidneys, bladder, pancreas, stomach, and uterine, and cervix. Vessels are weakened that can increase the odds of a major vessel rupture; gone in the blink of an eye!
Smoking will shorten your life expectancy.
As a smoker, you can expect to live about 7 to 10 years less than a non-smoker, and it will reduce the quality of your life. You will spend more time trying not to die than living life. When every breath you take becomes the center of your attention, you are no longer able to enjoy life in the same capacity as you did when you were younger. Walking becomes difficult, and once enjoyable outings become unbearable if not impossible. Many become totally shut in because any movement is strenuous and takes your breath away.
According to the American Lung Association, cigarettes contain approximately 600 ingredients and when burned, create over 7000 chemicals, 69 of them carcinogenic and many poisonous. Nicotine, the main addictive drug, a good dose of carbon monoxide, (what comes out of your car’s exhaust), and hydrogen cyanide, a highly poisonous gas – are all in every puff. Do you really want to breathe that in?
Healing takes longer.
Nicotine can cut the production of blood cells and make it sticky risking blood clots which cut off circulation and cause tissue death. Carbon monoxide diminishes oxygen transport and metabolism, while hydrogen cyanide inhibits the enzyme systems necessary for aerobic metabolism and oxygen transport at the cellular level. Because of this, slower healing has been witnessed in smokers with all types of wounds. Bones don’t mend, surgical closures often fail, and injuries don’t heal.
Children have more respiratory illness living with parents who smoke tobacco. Smoking during pregnancy can have persistent adverse effects on lung function throughout childhood. Children exposed to secondhand smoke after birth will experience decreased lung function, increased middle ear disease, including acute and recurrent ear infections and chronic fluid in the middle ear which can cause a hearing loss. These children are also more susceptible to having the onset of wheeze illnesses in early childhood, and an increased occurrence of a cough, phlegm, wheeze, and breathlessness which can result in asthma when they become school age. Children of smoking parents are also more likely to smoke themselves.
Smoking results in wrinkles and loss of limbs.
Nicotine causes blood vessels to narrow which reduces nutritional blood flow to the skin, resulting in tissue death and loss of elasticity which causes wrinkles in the skin. With narrowing vessels and sticky blood, clots can form causing loss of circulation to limbs and extensive tissue death. Yes, it can happen to you and no, you are not invincible like you may think.
The years of “You’ve come a long way baby” have passed and the act of smoking is no longer thought to be cool or sophisticated. The Surgeon General’s warning came out in 1964 and people are still starting and continuing to smoke despite the knowledge from that warning. Most of the general public no longer tolerates smoking in their presence and smoking laws are in place to protect the health of everyone.
Benefits of Quitting
According to The American Lung Association, as soon as you quit, your body begins to repair the damage caused by smoking. The following is what can be expected:
20 Minutes After Quitting:
- Your heart rate drops to a normal level.
12 Hours After Quitting:
- The carbon monoxide level in your blood drops to normal.
2 Weeks to 3 Months After Quitting:
- Your risk of having a heart attack begins to drop.
- Your lung function begins to improve.
1 to 9 Months After Quitting:
- Your coughing and shortness of breath decrease.
1 Year After Quitting:
- Your added risk of coronary heart disease is half that of a smoker’s.
5 to 15 Years After Quitting:
- Your risk of having a stroke is reduced to that of a nonsmoker’s.
- Your risk of getting cancer of the mouth, throat, or esophagus is half that of a smoker’s.
10 Years After Quitting:
- Your risk of dying from lung cancer is about half that of a smoker’s.
- Your risk of getting bladder cancer is half that of a smoker’s.
- Your risk of getting cervical cancer or cancer of the larynx, kidney or pancreas decreases.
15 Years After Quitting:
- Your risk of coronary heart disease is the same as that of a nonsmoker.
Financially, a 1 pack per day smoker in the northeast USA can pay about $8 per pack which adds up to $56 per week. Multiply that by 52 weeks in the year and they would spend $2912 annually on cigarettes. An all expense vacation to Mexico, Dominican Republic for 2, or other similar island in the Caribbean costs about $2000 and up, depending where, when and how long you go stay. Visualize yourself standing in blue tropical waters swirling around your ankles. Breathe deep as you inhale the salty ocean air, which is now more profound as your olfactory senses have woken up since the smoke has cleared. Take a walk along the beach and feel the warm sun cascading over your shoulders as the palm trees beside you sway in the breeze. Later at dinner you will taste the culinary delights that bedazzle your taste buds which have come back to life. You can’t remember when food ever tasted so good and each breath felt so free. You have become a non-smoker.
Doesn’t that sound more appealing than a pack of cigarettes every day? Maybe it’s time you thought about quitting. For more help, see your healthcare provider, find a quit line program in your area or sign up for a 6 month program with Plant Food and Gratitude for one on one support.
How Plant Food and Gratitude can help
At Plant Food and Gratitude , we offer individualized coaching sessions to assist you in managing your health concerns and making healthy changes to support you and the health of your family. We will support you as you transition to a more vibrant healthier you! Our coaches specialize in working with many areas of health including weight reduction, stress relief, thyroid disorders, heart disease, cancer support, and can help you find ways to make a transition to a more nutritious diet including more plant based eating.
If you’re interested in more about what we do, consider signing up for our newsletter to receive instant access to our wellness wheel assessment. You’ll also receive recipes and important health information delivered to your inbox and much much more!
Please let us know your thoughts! Comment below – we want to hear from you!
Do you want to learn more about how a Health Coach can help? Check out this great article on the benefits. If you’re interested in coaching to have some support around these lifestyle changes, we’d love to work with you. Receive a FREE Consultation and let us match you with one of our amazing health coaches we have standing by to work with you!