2265 North Clybourn Avenue    Chicago, IL 60614    P: 773.296.6700     F: 773.296.1131

My Annual Smoking Rant

Click here for the Health Tip link.

You needn’t bother reading this if you’re a non-smoker or you don’t know a soul who still smokes. If you do know a smoker, do a favor and forward this piece. You never can tell. Your forwarded e-mail might trigger the decision to quit and believe me, an angel will get its wings.

Tobacco use remains the leading preventable cause of death in the US. Globally, every year five million people die from tobacco-related deaths. In dramatic terms, the entire population of Chicago and half its suburbs dies every year.

Researchers at the Harvard Institute of Public Health wanted to determine what effect quitting smoking had on the overall health and longevity of women. They collected data on 104,519 women nurses, ages 30 to 55, over a 24-year period from 1980 to 2004.
Among these women, 12,483 died. Among those who died, approximately 1/3 had never smoked, 1/3 were current smokers, 1/3 were former smokers (two out of three deaths had a smoking history). Among the current smokers, 64% of the deaths were directly caused by smoking. Among the former smokers, 28% of the deaths were caused by smoking. That drop, from 64% to 28% is important. Quitting smoking helps.

The conclusion of the study was that if a woman stops smoking immediately, her risks of developing heart disease as a consequence of smoking start to drop from day one. Unfortunately, her lungs take longer to heal, and these risks continue for 20 years. The length of time you’ve smoked is important too. A teenager who starts smoking and continues through her adult life is in the highest risk group.

Can you stop? Definitely!

I believe that women start smoking to reduce stress and then become addicted to nicotine. If you remember from my book, The Triple Whammy Cure, women are more susceptible to stress because their level of stress-buffering serotonin is only a quarter that of men’s (even as women endure greater stress than men in day-to-day living).

For women, cigarettes act like comfort food for their calming effect. Men, by the way, have much less difficulty quitting than do women, in much the same way that men can give up chocolate (a serotonin booster) in an eyeblink, whereas some women emotionally crumble at the thought.

If you begin by raising your serotonin stress buffer before plunging into quitting, the whole process will be much easier. Following the Triple Whammy Cure guidelines (good nutrition, exercise, sunshine, supplements) will protect you from the shock of having your stress-mollifying Marlboro eliminated. If you happen to be taking an antidepressant (which also raises serotonin) and want to quit smoking, ask your doctor about a temporary dose increase during the withdrawal period. It will help.

In addition, smoking cessation programs do work. The prescription drug Chantix magically kills your interest in cigarettes. Nicotine patches reduce your dependence on nicotine and meeting with a quitting group is quite helpful. In solid clinical studies, acupuncture and Chinese herbs work as well.

Since you don’t smoke, click forward and send this to everyone you know who still lights up. Angels, wings…

Leave a Comment


Join our Newsletter

Get health recommendations, delicious and time-saving recipes, medical news, supplement reviews, birthday discounts, and more!

BIRTHDAY

Health Tips

Dr. Edelberg’s Health Tips contain concise bits of advice, medical news, nutritional supplement and pharmaceutical updates, and stress relief ideas. With every Health Tip, you’ll also receive an easy, delicious, and healthful recipe.

When you sign up to receive Health Tips, you can look forward to Dr. Edelberg’s smart and very current observations arriving in your in-box weekly. They’re packed with helpful information and are often slightly irreverent. One of the most common responses to the tips is “I wish my doctor talked to me like this!”

Quick Connect

Get One Click Access to our

patient-portal

The Knowledge Base

Patient education is an integral part of our practice. Here you will find a comprehensive collection of staff articles, descriptions of therapies and nutritional supplements, information addressing your health concerns, and the latest research on nutritional supplements and alternative therapies.

Join our Newsletter

Get health recommendations, recipes, medical news, supplement reviews, birthday discounts, and more!

Upcoming Workshops


**Winter Solstice Celebration: An evening of Acupuncture and Shamanic Healing
Tuesday, December 17, 5:45–7:30pm
Hosted by Katie Oberlin, HTCP and Mari Stecker, LAc

Course Fee: $75.00

Take a break from the hustle and bustle of the holiday season to enter the stillpoint of the Winter Solstice, reflect on the lessons of 2019, and set intentions for the new year. This will be an evening of individual and group healing, ceremony, and celebration. More →

Recent Health Tips

  • Infertility Issues? Start With The Guy

    I’ve lost track of the number of couples we treat at WholeHealth Chicago who are involved in one of the hormone injection/surgical procedure stops on the conveyor belt of infertility centers. Currently, it’s estimated that 15 to 20 percent of couples are struggling with infertility, half of them due to male factors. The infertility docs are nice enough and certainly well-meaning, but I note a Read More

  • Issues with Endocrinologists: Thyroid Approaches and Big Pharma

    My beefs with endocrinologists pretty much center on how they manage thyroid gland concerns, though they rarely win prizes for managing adrenal issues either. I don’t know any endocrinologists personally and rarely refer my patients to them. Occasionally, a patient with newly diagnosed hypothyroidism (low thyroid) will want to confirm the diagnosis with an endocrinologist. I suggest she prepare for a scolding if she’s taking Read More

  • Six Beefs With Rheumatologists

    If you find yourself in the waiting room of a rheumatologist, you’re likely there because your joints hurt and have been hurting, often for years. You’ve been getting by on aspirin or Advil for the pain, but with things worsening your primary care doctor suggests you should see a joint specialist, a rheumatologist. And because there’s a shortage of physicians in this specialty, your appointment Read More

Join our Discount Program!

Member benefits include 10% off all your purchases. Low, one-time membership fee of $25 ($35 for family).

MORE INFORMATION