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How to Quit Smoking, According to Scientists

In the wake of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s announcement that it hopes to help smokers quit by limiting nicotine content in cigarettes, tobacco stocks fell, leaving growers with the dilemma of how to shore up tobacco’s worth. However, as the EveningStandard reports, smokers also have a dilemma: How will they deal with ending their habit? It’s a given that quitting smoking is hard; scientists suggest using nicotine patches or prescription replacements to taper off the addiction, but they add that several nondrug solutions are also good, such as counseling, mindfulness and exercise.

Whatever you do, don’t switch to e-cigarettes, as they not only contain nictotine, but also have flavorings developed to satisfy your taste buds. The truth is e-cigs are not a safe alternative. No matter how it’s delivered, nicotine is still addictive, and the added chemicals in e-cigs aren’t good for you either.

Admittedly, smoking is a tough habit to break. But when you think that, no matter how long you’ve smoked, it’s never too late to stop, this may be an incentive to just get started on the path to no smokes. Research shows that those well into their 70s could reverse some of the damage of a lifetime of smoking after quitting, slashing their risk of heart attack and stroke by nearly 40 percent five years after quitting.

But before you turn to nicotine patches or drugs for help, I agree that there are alternatives you can try first. The power of visualization and mindfulness is one avenue; exercise is always good for every health problem. Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) is another stop-smoking strategy. EFT is a form of psychological acupressure, based on the same energy meridians used in traditional acupuncture for more than 5,000 years to treat physical and emotional ailments, but without the invasiveness of needles. So, pick a “quit day,” tell your friends (so they can encourage you), keep a diary of your concerns and successes, and get on your way to a smoke-free, healthy life!
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