quit smoking

  1. Gimmicks won't help you quit

    There are plenty of gimmicks out there that claim they'll help you to quit smoking -- not to mention a couple of risky Big Pharma drugs.

    And just about none of them work.

    Ever see someone with a nicotine patch on each arm and a cigarette in his hand puffing away? Me too.

    The latest research confirms what's obvious to everyone but him: The patch doesn't work.

    And here's something else to chew on: Nicotine gums are equally ineffective.

    Of 787 smokers who quit in the new study, a third restarted again within two years -- and the folks who spent money on patches, gums, inhalers and sprays were just as likely to be among them as those who went cold turkey.

    That's a far cry from the success rate promised when these things were first approved by the FDA, with studies showing they could triple the success rate of quitters.

    But it's right in line with what anyone who's already tried -- and failed -- to quit using gums and patches can already tell you. And it's also right in line with the rest of the research on this, which shows that all the gimmicks in the world can't deter a determined smoker from his habit.

    On the other hand, at least the worst thing that could come from a nicotine patch or gum is another failed attempt at quitting...and hopefully the determination to try even harder next time. (There's always a next time, right?)

    If you turn to meds for help, however, you could find yourself battling something worse than a return of your bad habit. You could even end up in a fight for your life.

    As I've told you before, Chantix -- the most common anti-smoking med -- has been linked time and again to bizarre behavior and even suicide...and one recent study found the drug can boost your odds of severe depression or suicide by 800 percent.

    If that's not enough, Chantix has also been linked to violence, hallucinations, paranoia, confusion and weird dreams -- and some of the drug's side effects can actually start after you stop taking it.

    All that, and 80 percent of the people who take the drug are back to smoking a year later.

    Here's the "cold" hard truth: There's one method that's been proven time and again to work. It's been used by close to 90 percent of successful quitters...and it won't even cost you a dime.

    It's cold turkey... and if you're serious about quitting, put it on the menu tonight.

  2. Study: Smokers are dumber

    Looking for a new reason to quit smoking?

    If the hacking, coughing, wheezing and bad breath aren't enough... if the increased risk of lung cancer won't do it... and if the higher likelihood of a stroke can't get you to quit, maybe this latest reason will: Smokers simply aren't as smart--and not just because they've made a unwise health decision.

    A new study finds that nicotine fiends suffer from lower intelligence.

    Israeli researchers looked at data on 20,000 men between the ages of 18 and 21 before, during and after their military service. And they found that the smokers among them had an average IQ of 94... versus 101 for the nonsmokers.

    The average range for healthy mean in that age group, meanwhile, is between 84 and 116, so it's the difference between being right in the middle and being much closer to the low end.

    And the more you smoke, the more it seems to hurt: Men who puffed away at a pack or more a day had an average IQ of 90, according to the study published in the journal Addiction.

    In other words, smoking won't just shrink penises (you can look it up, it's true!)... it will also shrink your intelligence.

    The researchers say that while many people assume that smokers are more likely to come from rougher backgrounds and may have lower intelligence to begin with as a result, their study included men of diverse socio-economic levels-- so they don't believe background is a big factor.

    They also looked at the impact of smoking and intelligence on twins, and found that when one twin smoked, the non- smoking brother was more likely to be the smarter of the two.

    Remember, if you're a smoker it's not too late no matter how long you've been at it. Your body can actually undo much of the damage, and it starts the moment you quit.

    But if you've been smoking for years, it could take years before you're fully healed.

    In other words, don't wait--get started now. Smokers are four times more likely to die of coronary heart disease, the leading cause of death in the United States. Smokers are also far more likely to die of lung cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and countless other awful conditions.

    And now, as the new study shows, it may hurt more than just your body--it could also hurt your mind.

    You might say that quitting is the smartest choice you can make.

  3. Smoking bans pay dividends

    If you want to be healthier, quit smoking. Few people, even many smokers, would deny that at this point.
  4. Quit smoking the right way

    Smokers who have turned to some prescription meds to help them quit may be getting a lot more than they bargained for.

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