World No Tobacco Day, 2011 (May 31)

It’s hard to believe that it has nearly been a whole year since we last blogged about World No Tobacco Day (WNTD).  So many things have happened since then, and yet it feels like just a few weeks ago, and I’m sure that your lives have been busy in the past year too.  But have you taken the plunge and begun a new, healthier way of life?  If not, May 31st might just be the perfect time to quit smoking cigarettes for good!

quit smoking on world no tobacco day

Ash trays with fresh flowers are a common symbol of World No Tobacco Day

When The Whole World Says No

One thing that can help you in taking on a major change in your life (such as quitting smoking and cleaning up your lungs), is knowing that you are not alone.  Knowing that there are thousands of people all over the world doing the same thing you are.  That is the beauty and the benefit of WNTD for the individual; that it can give you that final kick of motivation that gets you exchanging a destructive, dangerous habit for healthier, better ones.

World No Tobacco Day was created in 1987 by the World Health Organization (WHO), and 2011 is WNTD’s 23rd year (actual observance of WNTD began in 1988).  Each year has a theme that follows through press releases, to promotional flyers, pamphlets and other media materials.  In 2011, the theme is “The WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC).” Now you might just be saying ‘wha?’ to this.  This year’s theme is not a particularly personal one (as it has been in past years), but rather, an important WHO agreement that attempts to persuade governments and corporations to agree on reducing the production of tobacco, and tobacco products, and to replace tobacco farming with other, healthier crops.  To quote the WHO:

“The world needs the WHO FCTC as much as, if not more than, it did in 1996 when the World Health Assembly adopted a resolution calling for an international framework convention on tobacco control. Tobacco use is the leading preventable cause of death. This year, more than 5 million people will die from a tobacco-related heart attack, stroke, cancer, lung ailment or other disease. That does not include the more than 600,000 people – more than a quarter of them children – who will die from exposure to second-hand smoke. The annual death toll from the global epidemic of tobacco use could rise to 8 million by 2030. Having killed 100 million people during the 20th century, tobacco use could kill 1 billion during the 21st century.”

If you’d like to know more about this years WHO World No Tobacco Day theme, please follow this link.

World No Tobacco Day Can Be YOUR No Tobacco Day Too!

On a more personal level, WNTD is, at its core, a day where people that have a tobacco habit can forgo tobacco and tobacco related products for a whole day (Tuesday, 31st May), knowing that tens of thousands of others all round the world are doing the same thing.  It is in this sharing that you gain power and motivation to do something positive for yourself, just as the WHO is working for positive change in the world.  By observing World No Tobacco Day, you are being a part of that, and if you can do it for one day, perhaps you can go for longer… and make not smoking a part of a new, healthier life for yourself and for your lungs.

And don’t feel left out if you are a reformed smoker, now living healthy and free of nicotine!  This is your day to celebrate the effort you have gone to in making your life healthier. One way to really celebrate this is to start something designed to improve your health even further.  I can think of nothing better than building on a day of no tobacco by consider our flagship product, ‘The Complete Lung Detoxification Guide’ Series.  Whether you have already quit, or in the planning stage of saying goodbye to nicotine for good, our Lung Cleansing Guide has all the advice you need to turn one day free of nicotine into a lifetime of better health, and to speeding up the removal of tar and mucus that clogs up a recently reformed smoker’s lungs.  Trust me; you want this stuff out of your lungs, and your life.

So consider quitting smoking on World No Tobacco Day 2012, you could be feeling a whole lot better and having a cleaner set of lungs as well!

Until next time,

stay well, stay quit, and lung-toxin free.

William Renolds

Your Lungs After Quitting Smoking – This Is What You’ve Done To Yourself

It is unfortunate that before you took your first puff on a cigarette, someone didn’t sit you down and show you a catalogue of the damage you’d likely cause yourself by taking up that infernal habit (complete with goopy, color pictures).  Even a blind man could see, in the face of all the evidence, that smoking DOES damage your lungs while smoking and continues to damage your lungs after quitting smoking too. It also has a flow-on effect to your whole body causing harm to many systems. And it does this to a greater extent, and faster, the more you smoke and the longer you keep smoking.  The following is a list of the major damage that you could have done to your body by smoking. You have to accept that you did this, take responsibility for it, and then apply yourself to the task of making it as right as you can. You can’t continue to avoid it, or you’ll just keep making it worse.

As you read through this section, remind yourself:

1. Why you quit or are looking to quit

2. What you have to look forward to if you do go back (damn good motivation to stay clean)

3. Why you are working hard to improve your health!

Please note: Some of the following conditions may not have developed during your smoking ‘career.’  Others, well they are unavoidable, at least to some extent, after your first month of smoking.  If you want to know how you have been effected by your time smoking, please consult your local, qualified medical practitioner.

Damage Done Over Years of Smoking

Tobacco smoke has over 4000 chemicals in it.  These include Ammonia (used in toilet cleaner), Acetone (nail polish remover), Nicotine (insecticide at high doses), Carbon monoxide (a poison found in car exhaust fumes), Arsenic (used in rat poison), Hydrogen cyanide (gas chamber poison), Benzene (petrol additive).

This toxic chemical amalgam that enters the lungs in the form of tobacco smoke is collectively called ‘tar’ when it coats surfaces, like  fingers, teeth and air sacks of the lungs. The tar in tobacco cigarettes is a major cause of lung cancer, emphysema and bronchitis. The toxins from the tar can damage lung cells that keep tumors from forming. Cigarette tar also damages cilia in the lungs, the small, hair-like structures which protect the lining of the lungs. In addition to the discoloring of teeth, tar can cause periodontitis, a gum disease that can result in the loss of teeth.

Lung cancer: your chances of getting lung cancer depend on your genetic susceptibility, the length of time you were a smoker and how much you smoked over that time.  This is referred to as pack-years (the average number of packs per day multiplied by the number of years you’ve smoked).  The greater the pack-years, the greater the risk. When you’re getting up around 50 pack-years and beyond, that’s a lot. If people have a lot of pack-years, the risk of, say, lung cancer never goes back down to the risk of a non-smoker.

Emphysema: a disease caused by the destruction of the alveoli (small, sack like structures at the lower periphery of the lungs) and associated capillaries (tiny blood vessels), where gas exchange takes place (oxygen is taken into the body, and carbon dioxide (a waste product) is released).  Undamaged, adult, human lungs have an internal surface area around 753 sq. ft (70 m2), which is roughly one half of the standard-sized tennis court surface!  The capillaries that surround the alveoli (the other side of the gas exchange equation) run to a length of about 620 miles (nearly 1000 km)!  As gas exchange is all about surface area, you can imagine that this give a healthy person a considerable rate of gas exchange.  This is far more than is needed ‘at rest,’ but as a person’s exertions increase, so does their need for gas exchange. As emphysema progresses, this maximal volume/min of gas exchange decreases, effecting your ability to exert yourself.  So the tiny little air sacs become bigger ones — and they’re less efficient in transporting oxygen. The lung can’t grow new walls for these air sacs. The lung loses tiny blood vessels and can’t grow new ones. So that’s permanent. Anyone who has smoked for more than a few months has at least some level of emphysema.

(Chronic) Bronchitis: a disease caused by inflammation (swelling) of the lining of the bronchial tubes (the larger ‘pipes’ leading down to the alveoli, where gas exchange occurs). Long-term bronchitis, termed ‘chronic,’ is an inflammation and swelling of the lining of the airways that lead to their narrowing and obstruction.  This inflammation stimulates production of mucus (sputum), which can cause further obstruction of the airways. Some of this inflammation can be reversed. But if the inflammation has led to scarring of the walls of the airway, some of that cannot.  Again it depends on how long you’ve been smoking, and how many you smoked each day.  Also, obstruction of the airways, especially with mucus, increases the likelihood of bacterial infections in your lungs after quitting smoking or during your smoking days.

Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): a collective term for disease effecting the lungs due to smoking (but can also be caused by other factors, such as long-term exposure to high levels of air pollutants and occupational causes), which includes emphysema and chronic bronchitis.

Peripheral Vascular Disease (PVD): the narrowing and hardening of the arteries resulting in decreased blood flow in parts of the body other than the heart or brain.  This is caused by some of the chemicals in tobacco smoke that are absorbed into the blood stream and transported around the body when you smoke.  These chemicals make the walls of the blood vessels sticky, which allows cholesterol and other dangerous fatty material to build up on the inner walls of the arteries and clogging them.  Combined with the artery walls hardening (becoming less elastic), this all results normal blood flow becoming more difficult, making the heart work harder (which can lead to heart failure, amongst other things).  This reduced blood flow is most critical in the capillaries, which already have very small internal diameters, so you can imagine it doesn’t take a lot to block them completely.  Lack of blood flow to an area can cause that area to die, and gangrene is the result.

Increased Risk of Many Cancers: Besides lung cancer, smoking had been linked to the increased chance of many types of cancer, including breast cancer, throat cancer, some types of colon cancer, cancer of the tongue, cheek or lips, stomach cancer, urinary bladder cancer, and many more.

Many other minor and peripheral health problems such as: Alzheimer’s Disease, Lupus, Impotence, Blindness, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Acid Reflux, Snoring, Depressed Immune System, hair loss, increased face wrinkles, premature aging, halitosis, stained teeth, stomach ulcers, insomnia and more.

Okay, that’s enough of the doom and gloom. If you have quit smoking or are looking to stop smoking for all the above mentioned reasons, and now let’s work on making you healthier and happier. If you haven’t already, jump over to our main page and check out the great deal available on our flagship product, The Complete Lung Detoxification Guide.  With this program, you’ll not only get the best advice available for clearing your lungs after quitting smoking of all that toxic tar, but if you haven’t quit yet, or are having trouble quitting, we’ve got that covered too.  Also, you’ll find out of lot about ‘why’ you’ve smoked, which will help you understand and follow our tried and tested methods for staying quit, and living a healthier, smoking-free life.

Until next time,

stay well, stay quit, and lung-toxin free.

~William Renolds