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News: November 30, 2009

Switching to Light Cigarettes Will Not help you Quit Smoking

November 30, 2009

The Center of Disease Control (CDC) says that there are 44 million American smokers and many of these smokers are looking for ways to quit. Some smokers in an attempt to kick the habit are switching to "light" or "ultra light" to help their battle against nicotine, however, a new study suggests switching to a lighter cigarerette does not help.

A newly published study published in the November 2009 issue of Tobacco Control, analyzed survey data from about 31,000 smokers who were asked whether they had switched to a milder or low-tar brand of cigarettes and the reasons for the switch. It was discovered that smokers who switched from full flavor cigarettes for cigarettes that are lighter, made more attempts to kick the habit than other smokers who did not switch.

"It may be that smokers think that a lighter brand is better for their health and is therefore an acceptable alternative to giving up completely," Dr. Hilary Tindle of the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, who led the study.

A quarter of the people in the study said they switched because of flavor but nearly 20 percent said they had switched for better flavor and the desire to smoke a less harmful cigarette, and as part of an effort to stop smoking completely.

Tindle's team discovered that those who switched to lighter brands were 58 percent more likely to have tried to quit smoking between 2002 and 2003 than those who stuck with their brand. But they were 60 percent less likely to actually succeed in quitting.

"Forty-three percent of smokers reported a desire to quit smoking as a reason for switching to lighter cigarettes. While these individuals were the most likely to make an attempt, ironically, they were the least likely to quit smoking," Tindle said. Other research has shown that so-called low-tar cigarettes have just as much tar, nicotine and other compounds as regular cigarettes.

Switching to light cigarettes will not help you quit smoking, however, there are many safe products on the market and alternative therapies that can help smokers kick the habit.

Written by Tyler Woods Ph.D.

Tucson, Arizona

Exclusive to eMaxHealth




Archive issues: (50)

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December 12, 2009 | Researchers Find New Drug To Shrink Breast Cancer Tumors

Boston (SmartAboutHealth) - Researchers have discovered a new antibody drug that has the ability to shrink breast cancer tumors that other drugs have failed to impact.  The study was carried out ...

December 11, 2009 | Fewer dollars for smoking prevention

Even as states pull in billions of dollars in tobacco settlement money - part of which is typically used to fund anti-smoking programs - they're slashing the amount they spend on such programs by 15%.   Altogether, states will spend $567.5 million on anti-smoking efforts in the 2010 fiscal year, says a report released by five groups including the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation ...

December 9, 2009 | Smoking Kills Millions Worldwide Every Year

Tobacco use kills at least 5 million people every year, a figure that could rise if countries don't take stronger measures to combat smoking, the World Health Organization said Wednesday.  In a new report on tobacco use and control, the U.N. agency said nearly 95 percent of the global population is unprotected by laws banning smoking. ...

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