If You Smoke Don't Cut Back

I had always contended that sugar is more dangerous than cigarettes and that it was far healthier to optimize one's diet before addressing nicotine addiction. However, it obviously is wise to not smoke. But if one decides to stop smoking the best route is cold turkey and not gradual reduction.

Smokers who pride themselves on successfully cutting back as a step toward quitting tobacco altogether may be caught in a haze of self-deception. New research shows smokers who slash their cigarette use by half quickly change the way they smoke to compensate for less exposure--ironically, in the process, often boosting their consumption of smoke, carbon monoxide, nicotine and other cancer-causing agents.

The human body really is a miracle. It knows when it is not getting what it's used to, and it automatically does something about it. Researchers discovered that, generally, when women smoked in a restricted environment, they took larger drags and smoked more of the cigarette before putting it out. In addition, when smoking fewer cigarettes, the women produced more carbon monoxide in their exhaled air per cigarette, compared to when they smoked their regular number of cigarettes or increased use. So, the bottom line for smokers is to be aware that just because they smoke 12 cigarettes a day instead of 20 doesn't mean that they are less dependent on tobacco.

Smoker's frequently use cigarettes as a form of emotional support and I could not recommend more highly the new brain wave entrainment therapy that we have recently started offering. It is really inexpensive and is a marvelous tool to help people address their addictive tendencies.

Pharmacolgical Biochemisty Behavior April 2004;77(4):685-93

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