| length: 9 min. |
|Tobacco In A Healthier Way|
by Jasper van Capelle in Health & Body , 17 November 2011
Dit artikel is ook in het Nederlands beschikbaar
length: 9 minuten
A healthy smoker who wants to quit, will hardly ever succeed. But by choosing a better variety of tobacco, it still is possible to enjoy smoking and nearly exclude all health risks. Half of the Swedish men choose Snus, an unprocessed raw tobacco, while only twelve percent still smokes modern cigarettes. At the moment, Swedish men will become the oldest in Europe.
Of course, you may think you can grow very old with cigarettes, and, yes, it is true that the extremely old are smoking a lot. Half of the super centenarians (110 and above) is smoking, and smokers are dominating the top ten of oldest people. At No. 1 is the port drinking Jeanne Calment, who died at the age of 123 in 1997.
Madame Jeanne smoked for more than a hundred years, and was still dancing in Parisian discos with her house hit “La Farandole” at the age of 120. And, of course, the perpetual smoker is doing everything else right: enough exercise, the right nutrition, no sugar or junk food, a daily dose of sunlight, and mostly smoking outside. Certainly not in an unventilated smoking room where lungs are treated to a tenfold of smoke, and have no chance to clean themselves out.
For most people, smoking is indeed unhealthy, and quitting is certainly worth-wile if you are in control of other life-style aspects and do not want to get fat. Eighty percent of former smokers gain a good few pounds, so that health benefits are not achieved. To quit smoking has a fat downside.
The Facts: Nearly Twenty Pounds Of Fat For Ex-Smoker
The UK Centre for Tobacco Control Studies is a collaboration of nine British universities. Early this year, they published a study on the connection between quitting and weight increase, having followed a large group of former smokers in Birmingham for eight years. Those who had successfully quit after eight years gained nearly twenty pounds on average. Those who had started smoking again, gained almost seven.
The pounds were mostly concentrated around the belly. In 2007, Harvard University had already announced that the obesity epidemic is stubbing out the health benefits of quitting.
In the world of science, the taboo on the disadvantages of quitting has now been lifted, and a lot of studies on the increased chance of metabolic syndrome X when quitting are being published.
The syndrome X is a combination of increased blood pressure, diabetes, and other risk factors, causing a fall in life expectancy of yet another twenty years.
Nicotine speeds up metabolism, on average making you burn an extra 200 calories a day. Those who quit permanently will have to drink 500 ml of soda less during their lifetime. Besides speeding up metabolism, nicotine is addictive, suppresses the appetite, and prevents articular degeneration and Parkinson’s disease.
A former smoker develops a bigger appetite and often a sugar addiction. As far back as 1924, Nobel Prize winner Otto Warburg had already discovered that cancer cells feed on sugar.
If you seriously want to work on your health, but need to loose weight first or want to enjoy tobacco a little longer, it is possible to reduce the risks of smoking considerably without much effort. The easiest way is to ditch your regular cigarette brand, and replace it with organic tobacco. Thirty eurocent more expensive, and for sale at any tobacconist. A Native American is depicted on the package.
Healthy Natural Tobacco?
No, less unhealthy. There is a list of 599 unhealthy chemicals that are added to regular cigarettes and rolling tobacco. You will get rid of those, once you start smoking natural tobacco. Native Americans have used organic tobacco without problems for thousands of years. According to Professor Stanon Glanz of the University of California, the difference between a cigarette without additives and one that does contain them is the difference between an apple that inherently contains a small amount of arsenic, and an apple sprayed with DDT.
Mind you, Stanon Glanz is the head of the Center for Tobacco Control Research and Education, and one of the leading forces behind the anti-smoking lobby in the United States. But he is honest enough to acknowledge the difference between the different ways of tobacco usage.
And ecological tobacco with Spirit limits radioactive damage...
In 2006, former KGB agent Alexander Litvinenko was poisoned in London with radioactive Polonium-210, making the tobacco industry extremely nervous. Since the sixties, the industry had been aware that a much larger amount of Polonium found its way into tobacco products. In 1968, the American Tobacco Company did an unpublished study that showed that the amount of polonium in cigarettes had increased threefold compared with those around in 1938. Cigarette smoke contains Polonium-210, and is its only component that causes cancer in laboratory animals when inhaled.
Eighty years ago, tobacco did not contain as much polonium, and lung cancer was a rare disease. In the nineteen fifties, the use of phosphate-rich manure increased the amount of polonium in American tobacco threefold.
Due to polonium, the number of lung cancer cases in men kept increasing from a very low number in 1930 (four in 100,000 cases per year), until polonium became the number 1 cause of cancer in 1980 (seventy-two in 100,000 cases per year).
Yet, there was a twenty percent reduction in the number of smokers at the time. According to scientists, smoking one packet of cigarettes a year equals the radioactivity of 300 chest x-rays. Polonium is released through combustion, causing radon gas to convert into Polonium-210.
In 1990, Surgeon General C. Everett Koop, the highest American health authority, already went public with the fact that radioactivity, not tar, was responsible for at least ninety percent of smoking related lung cancer cases.
In India, chemical manure is not used, and the level of radioactivity in cigarettes is six times lower. For Indian chain-smoking males, the risk of developing lung cancer is ten times lower than for their American counterparts. American Spirit cigarettes are made without the use of chemical manure.
Continue Smoking And Getting Healthier
Exercise, sun, and good nutrition do help to reduce the risks of smoking. Someone who walks twenty-five kilometers a week, stays in the sun a lot, and eats lots of eggs and liver (vitamin B6), reduces lung cancer risks by fifty percent. The sacred herb Curcuma, which is eaten in India on a daily basis (it is in curry), is also an effective cancer-controller. On Okinawa, the “island of eternal youth,” Curcuma tea is a daily drink.
The global figures per 100,000 adults can be found on www.iarc.fr, corrected for age. We already knew that India is immune to cancer (because of sun, Curcuma, and organic tobacco), but it is remarkable that more American men fall ill with lung cancer (50 on 100,000) than Dutch men (47 on 100,000).
In The Netherlands, we have been smoking twice the amount of the same cigarettes as in the United States. Twenty years ago, forty percent of Dutch males smoked, and twenty percent of American men, yet Americans are at greater risk. The likely explanation? Exercise.
In 2007, “Men’s Health” called the Dutch the most muscular in the world. It seems that twenty percent of our men has a six-pack under their T-shirt. A connection with cycling was also made.
Smoking Ages Less Than Obesity
In August 2005, the renowned scientific magazine “The Lancet” compared the effects of obesity and smoking on the ageing of telomeres (the end part of chromosomes) in white blood cells of 1120 Caucasians. The shorter the telomere, the shorter the rest of your life. The result:
- Obesity (severely overweight) means nine years older than thin;
- Smokers age only half as much as the obese;
- Fat smokers are the record holders, and scored a minimum of ten years of ageing.
Furthermore, losing weight or quitting does limit the loss of telomeres, but does not repair the ageing damage. In simple terms: The smoker beats the corpulent. Fortunately, you do not have to make a drastic decision at all, as changing to Snus, the Swedish tobacco, is 99% less damaging than ordinary tobacco.
Live Longer With Swedish Tobacco Snus
Swedish men love tobacco. Half of them use it daily, which is considerably more than in The Netherlands where only twenty-eight percent still smokes. Yet, Dutch men suffer from lung cancer three times more often than Swedish men. The difference being that in Sweden most men (forty percent) use tobacco in a teabag under their upper lip (Snus), and only twelve percent still smokes cigarettes.
Snus is a kind of chewing tobacco, with the difference that it is not spitted out and can be used discreetly at any place and at any time. In The Netherlands, chewing tobacco is associated with dirty old men with black teeth, but in Sweden, young people think it is cool. Forty percent of 18-year-old Swedish boys are snussing to school, while only five percent of Swedish 18-year-olds smoke.
Snus is popular among Scandinavian athletes (particularly ice hockey). At sports tournaments, boxes of Snus go into sports bags, spreading the use of Snus to other Scandinavian countries.
Although Snus is officially illegal in Finland, no action is taken against the Swedish ferries who supply the Finish youth with Snus twice a day. The new Norwegian health policy is to initially help smokers quit with medication. But if this fails, smokers are then referred to a Snus dealer, who is successful most of the time.
In Sweden, smoking is expensive. Therefore, only twelve percent of men smoke, while Snus can be sold tax free and without advertising restrictions. A box of Snus containing twenty-four bags of tobacco costs two euro (in Sweden).
The nicotine in Snus needs approximately one minute to reach the brain, and its effect lasts for one to two hours, making the need to smoke disappear. Snussing is very inexpensive, and does not seem to be hazardous to your health. A Swedish Snusser has exactly the same life expectancy as a non-smoker.
As Snus is placed under the upper lip, it creates a cool effect, and with the various hip boxes (Construction worker Snus, Sporty Snus, and Sexy Snus), you can show what kind of snusser you are. Very important for a novice teenage Snusser. For girls and women there is mini Snus, which disappears under the upper lip unseen.
Snus In Europe
The European Union banned Snus in 1992, because the World Health Organization was of the opinion that tobacco, including Snus, causes cancer. Sweden, the country where people have been using Snus for years without any negative health issues, and with the lowest lung cancer rate in Europe, did not agree. Sweden joined the European Union in 1994, but arranged an exemption from the ban on Snus.
In 2005, it was proven incontrovertibly that Swedish Snus does not cause cancer, and the World Health Organization has admitted to having judged too hastily at the time. In 2005, the warning that Snus may cause cancer has been removed from packets. A study in which 20,000 Swedes were followed for thirty years, showed no connection between Snus and cancer.
In May 2007, the magazine “The Lancet” made mincemeat of the European ban on Snus. The scientists called it a perverse health policy to allow tobacco to be available through its most harmful product, namely cigarettes, but not inform the public about a kind of tobacco that is significantly less harmful (or perhaps not harmful at all), namely Swedish Snus.
In 2009, a study among 17,000 Swedish male twins showed that no connection between Snus and cardiovascular diseases can be found. In August 2011, another Swedish study showed that there is no connection between Snus and dental decay and periodontitis. Actually it is the other way round. The high pH value of Snus (it is basic) protects the teeth against acids, and Snus does not cause stained teeth.
NOTE: Swedish Snus is not the same as American Snus, which is harmful.
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