The study showed that just smoking an average of one cigarette a day saw a 64 percent increase in early death.
If you think that smoking the occasional cigarette will do no damage to your health then think again. A new study has shown that your odds for an early death are still significant even if you smoke just one cigarette a day.
The study, conducted by researchers at the U.S. National Cancer Institute (NCI), have shown that “there is no safe level of exposure to tobacco smoke” while analyzing 290,000 Americans aged between 59 and 82. Participants were questioned about their smoking habits throughout different points in their life especially ‘light smoking’ which is considered to be 10 cigarettes or less a day.
The results were shocking – compared to people who never smoked, those that were smoking around an average of one cigarette a day throughout their life still saw a 64 percent chance of dying prematurely. While those that smoked up to 10 cigarettes a day on average had an 87 percent risk of dying early.
The researchers said in the study that there was “a common perception, particularly among young people,” that smoking a few cigarettes a day or a week was safe, adding, “These smokers may substantially underestimate” the risks.
The study also showed that it’s never too late to quit smoking. Those that used to smoke have a dramatic decrease in the risk of premature death than those who continue to smoke lightly.
The next step is to educate people to believe that despite only smoking occasionally, they are still considered smokers despite claiming they don’t smoke. Health workers should be asking questions about the last time someone smoked instead of asking if a patient is a smoker to be able to get the full picture.
Details of the study were published in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine.