Author Archives: erin_legg

Cigarettes Broken up

Need More Reasons to Stop Smoking?

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), lung cancer accounts for about 30% of cancer deaths per year in the United States. The majority of lung cancer cases result from smoking.

Men who smoke are 23% more likely than male nonsmokers to develop lung cancer, and women smokers are 13% more likely than female nonsmokers to develop lung cancer. More than half of lung cancer cases are in former smokers, and 15% are in those who have never smoked.

Smoking also leads to cardiovascular disease, which remains the number one killer in the United States. Diseases associated with smoking include atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), heart failure, high blood pressure, and even stroke.

Carbon Monoxide & Nicotine

Cigarettes Broken upSmoking increases the level of carbon monoxide in the blood. Increased carbon monoxide levels in the blood slows transportation of oxygen throughout the body by 5 to 15%. Low levels of oxygen through the body leads to heart disease.

Nicotine is an alkaloid that works upon the brain’s nerve centers that regulate the heart and breathing functions. Causing the small blood vessels to constrict, this lessens the vessels elasticity, increase heart problems, and increases blood vessel disease.

Carcinogens

Constant smoking results in a build up of carcinogens, the cancer producing agents found in tar and tobacco smoke. Carcinogens are deposited in the bronchial tubes that lead to the lungs. From the bronchial tubes, the carcinogens move into the air tubes of the lungs where the cells are attacked and mutated into cancerous cells: lung cancer.

Workings Farming Tobacco

The Poverty Trap of Tobacco Farmers in Developing Countries

To keep up with the demand for tobacco, transnational tobacco companies and manufacturers encourage farmers in developing countries to grow the plant.

This crop has been promoted as a solution to the extensive poverty these farmers experience.

Tobacco farmers receive low wages, put in long hours to tend to this intensive crop, and all benefits are had by the tobacco industry.

Intensive Labour Met with Low Wages & Returns

Tobacco is one of the most labour intensive crops. Almost everything, from seeding to harvesting, is done by hand. Farmers in developing countries enlist the help of the entire family to tend to the plants, including young children. As a result, these children miss out on valuable educational experiences that could serve as the key to breaking the poverty cycle.

Workings Farming Tobacco

Hiring extra labour is difficult for the farmers as well, as it is expensive to cover the wages for workers when the work day can last 16 hours or more and the return on investment is very low. Many tobacco farmers are lucky to break even at the end of the year, while others experience very low return for their hard work: for example, one farmer in Vietnam earns $250 US for every $130 US he invests.

Health & Safety Concerns of Tobacco Farming

The potential for tobacco farmers to be diagnosed with Green Tobacco Sickness (GTS) is high. GTS occurs when nicotine is absorbed from handling wet green tobacco leaves. Symptoms of this illness include: nausea, vomiting, muscle weakness, headaches, dizziness, cramps, respiratory problems, and blood pressure fluctuations.

These farmers are also exposed to extensive pesticides and chemical fertilizers, which can lead to skin rashes, dehydration, sleeping difficulties, and lung problems.

Environmental Concerns from Tobacco Crops

Farming tobacco plants creates environmental degradation. The pesticides and chemicals that are applied to the plants pollutes the fields and leeches nutrients from the soil. in the curing process, farmers use coal, a major air polluter, and massive amounts of wood. In fact, approximately 200,000 hectares of wood is used annually in the curing process around the world.

Substitute Crops

The governments of many developing countries are promoting to tobacco farmers other crops to diversify. For example, the Malaysian government has since 2005 offered financial incentives for tobacco farmers to substitute their growing operations with more sustainable, less labour intensive crops that yield higher financial returns, such as:

  • corn, rice, barely
  • kenaf and jathropa
  • dragon fruit, pineapple, sweet potato, and banana

To learn more about this poverty cycle, watch this informational short film.

The Tobacco Trap: Cycle of Poverty

Parts includes in a Cigarette

Do You Know What’s in Your Cigarette?

After manufacturing, a cigarette contains 20% expanded tobacco (tobacco puffed with carbon dioxide to be used as a filler), tobacco leaf stems, and reclaimed tobacco.

30% is made of reconstituted tobacco. The remaining 50% is tobacco treated with sugar to help cover up nicotine’s bitter taste, and to help enhance the absorption of the nicotine in the body.

There are also thousands of chemicals used in the cigarette manufacturing process, many of which are known carcinogens.

Tobacco By-Products

Creating a tobacco blend of flue-cured brightleaf, burley tobacco, and oriental tobacco produces a lot of tobacco by-products. As an added economic benefit for cigarette manufacturers, this waste is processed back into forms to be used again later on in the cigarette making process.

Reconstituted tobacco (“recon”) is made from a combination of stripped tobacco leaf stems, tobacco dust swept from the floor of the factory, and expired cigarettes sent back to the processing plant to be reclaimed.

Adding Chemicals to Cigarettes

Parts includes in a CigaretteChemicals are used in the manufacturing process of cigarette because they help with “nicotine manipulation.” Recon is treated with ammonia because it enhances the absorption of nicotine in the smoker’s body when the cigarette is smoked. Chemicals are added to the tobacco blend to also help with the burning process: without them, cigarettes would probably burn out.

Just a few of the chemicals added to cigarettes include:

  • carbon monoxide
  • arsenic
  • hydrogen cyanide
  • acetone
  • butane
  • formaldehyde
  • sulfuric acid
  • freon

Other Cigarette Additives

Cigarette manufacturers use other additives in the tobacco blend to smooth the taste or experience of smoking. If no add-ons were included, the cigarette when smoked would be very harsh to the smoker. Additives also help define the distinct brand of cigarettes.

Some add-ons include:

  • chocolate
  • butter fat
  • glycerol
  • sugar

Want to know more? Watch this History Channel video clip >

Documentary Film The Tobacco Conspiracy

The Tobacco Conspiracy: Investigative Documentary Challenges Industry Lies

Filmmaker Nadia Collot took three years to dig deep into the global tobacco industry and uncover the major lies and fraud for which it’s responsible.

In The Tobacco Conspiracy (Kuiv Productions and National Film Board of Canada), the network of deceit and lies of the Big Tobacco companies is highlighted, as well as the expanse of this manipulation and corruption.

Featuring interviews with experts and thoroughly researched documentation, Collot delivers one of the most powerful looks at the fraudulent tobacco industry.

Investigation Into Big Tobacco

Collot asks, “Why is cigarette smoking so popular and accepted despite all the information we have?” A former smoker of 20 years, Collot spent three years looking for an explanation to this question. Her discoveries are well-documented in this must-see film.

Documentary Film The Tobacco ConspiracyShe examines various aspects of the fraudulent roles of Big Tobacco, including how the tobacco industry distorts scientific research and even uses bribery of scientists and researchers to manipulate data in order to serve its own interests and purposes. Tobacco companies recognized privately in 1953 that smoking is directly related to cancer, yet they banded together to release The Frank Statement that denied this correlation.

While there have been successes in the fight against Big Tobacco—implementation of graphic warning labels, advertising restrictions, even increased taxation—there is still a way to get around rules. And that’s most often done using lots of money. As an example, this documentary looks into how tobacco companies use hidden product placement as a means of evading advertising regulations. Cigarette companies pay heavily for smoking scenes to be included in television and film.

Tobacco and Government

Because cigarettes are heavily taxed, the government is constantly at war with itself. The taxation provides a heavy and consistent flow of revenue. Yet there are severe health implications that result from tobacco use.

The Tobacco Conspiracy also sheds light on the international smuggling role the industry plays. As smugglers infiltrate poor companies, they distribute free cigarettes to young people with the specific goal of getting them addicted. Once they are, the smugglers then charge money for the smokes. The tobacco companies then approach the poor country’s government and explain how much revenue is lost, and offers to distribute the cigarettes in order to provide a consistent flow of money.

Watch This Documentary for Free

The Tobacco Conspiracy shows viewers endless amount of documentation and information that may astound some as to the lengths the tobacco industry will go to in order to gain new customers and make more money. This hour and half film is available for viewing online at no cost.

The Tobacco Conspiracy

Watch the powerful documentary online now …

Money on Fire

Funding Tobacco Control Programs Has Long-Term Payoff

States feel the economic effects of smoking through increased health and medical costs and lost productivity of its citizens.

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends that states fund tobacco control programs in order to reduce the economic burden of smoking’s effects.

Some states have been cutting back on the funding of these programs as a cost-saving measure. But a study reveals that it is cheaper for states in the long run to fund tobacco control programs than it is to not.

Economic Examination of Tobacco

The study used data collected between 1991 and 2007. During this time, tobacco control programs were financed using:

  • the tobacco tax;
  • money from the Tobacco Master Settlement Agreement; and
  • state and private funding.

Money on FireThe CDC recommends a dollar amount that states should be spending in order to make their tobacco control programs successful. The study notes that by 2010, states were spending on average merely 17% of the recommended amount by the CDC. Additionally, in recent years, the taxes consumers pay on cigarettes has become relied on more as a consistent stream of revenue for states.

So which is better economically: increasing revenue raised by selling cigarettes or spending millions of dollars on tobacco use prevention?

More Tax or More Spending?

The study concluded that following the CDCs recommendation would result in a savings for state governments of between 14 and 20% of the cost of tobacco control programs in the future.

These tobacco control programs have been shown to have a long-term effect on the demand for cigarettes and tobacco products. This trend only increases over time as the programs’ effectiveness has an impact and more and more people quit smoking. Tobacco control programs lower the economic costs of medical and insurance payouts for tobacco-related health problems, as well as the cost of lost productivity.

What is the Real Cost of Tobacco?

Watch this short video…

Reference: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/releases/238304.php

Cigarettes in a Pile

How Much Tar in That Cigarette?

The yellow stains on a smoker’s fingers and teeth is caused by the tar that results from smoking tobacco.

Tar causes great damage to a person’s lungs as it kills the cilia, affecting breathing ability.

The accumulation of this substance can be difficult to imagine, but a graphic video demonstrates for people the levels of tar that is extracted from approximately 20 packs of cigarettes.

Smoking Video Shows Tar Extraction

The video Still Smoking? Watch This! shows an experiment where almost 400 cigarettes are “smoked” through water using a vacuum. The water turns brown and then eventually black as the tar is extracted from the cigarettes. The more “tarry” the water, the more smoke is trapped as well.

Cigarettes in a PileThe experimenters then boil the tar water. After the water as evaporated, only the thick black tar remains. After letting the substance dry, the result is a sticky, crusty tar crust.

This experiment was done to stimulate what substance settles in a smoker’s lungs.

More Reason to Quit Smoking

The cigarettes used in this experiment contained 18 mg of tar. Cigarette companies manufacture cigarettes in three categories:

  • low tar cigarettes with 7 mg of tar or less
  • medium tar cigarettes with 15 to 21 mg of tar
  • high tar cigarettes with 22 mg of tar or more

Cigarettes contain over 4,00 chemicals, including more than 40 known carcinogens. Tar in cigarettes is the byproduct of smoking tobacco. Tar build up in the lungs causes damage as it prevents proper functioning. The accumulation of tar in a smoker’s body contributes to several health problems, including the following few:

  • emphysema
  • bronchitis
  • lung cancer
  • chronic respiratory disease
  • mouth cancer
  • throat cancer.

Watch the video Still Smoking?

See for yourself the amount of tar that’s produced

Broken Cigarette and Young Woman

Retailers Selling Tobacco Products to Underage Users Receive Warning Letter

According to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), approximately 20% of high school students smoke cigarettes or use other tobacco products.

The FDA also reports that 80% of adults who smoke started before they were 18 years old.

As part of the FDAs strategy of protecting the health of youth, compliance checks amongst tobacco retailers are done to determine whether or not vendors are cooperating in the enforcement of tobacco control laws.

Violating Tobacco Laws

Broken Cigarette and Young WomanIn June 2009, President Obama signed the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act. This legislation gives the FDA the authority to ensure smoking laws are enforced by undergoing compliance investigations of retailers. The purpose of this act is to ensure minors are protected from the health-crippling effects of smoking and tobacco use.

If retailers are found to be selling tobacco products, including cigarettes and smokeless tobacco, to underage users, the FDA issues a warning letter as part of the violation of tobacco control laws. If a retailer is found to be breaking the law, they may be required to pay a civil financial penalty.

To learn more, please click > FDA’s Warning Letters

Tobacco Control Compliance Investigations

Approximately 30,000 compliance checks have been completed across the country. The FDA has issued over 1,200 warning letters to establishments found violating restrictions of the sale and distribution of cigarettes and other tobacco products.

The compliance investigations include verifying whether or not the retailer:

  • confirms the customer’s age by asking for photo identification;
  • properly labels and advertises according to law smokeless tobacco products;
  • has for sale single cigarettes;
  • has in place a ban on cigarette products flavored like fruit or candy; and
  • is using vending machines or self-serving cigarette dispensers that have been banned from use.

For more information on the FDAs retailer inspections, please click > Inspection of Retailers

Video Demonstrates How Smoking Destroys Your Lungs

Lung cancer accounts for approximately one third of cancer deaths in the American population.

Over $10 billion is spent annually on the diagnosis and treatment of lung cancer.

The majority of people with this disease are smokers, but former smokers and people exposed to secondhand smoke are still at risk.

What Smoking Does to Your Lungs

Smoking and exposure to secondhand smoke causes the invasion of over 4,000 chemicals into the lungs through the mouth and nose. These chemicals are deposited as tar in the lungs, sticking to the cilia. The function of the “hair-like” cilia is to keep the airways and lungs clean. When covered with tar, the cilia dies off. Germs and dirt do not get cleaned out and there is an accumulation of mucous. “Smoker’s Cough” is attributed to dead cilia. When dirty mucous clogs the airways and blocks the inhalation and exhalation of breath, a person’s reaction is to cough.

Long Term Effects of Smoking on the Lungs

Smoking destroys the body in many ways. A few of the long term consequences to the lungs caused by smoking and continued exposure to secondhand smoke includes:

  • emphysema
  • cancer
  • bronchitis
  • asthma
  • chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)

To see the difference in functioning between healthy lungs and tumor-covered lungs, watch the following video:

Freshstart: 21 Days to Stop Smoking by The American Cancer Society

Quit Smoking: Freshstart Audio Program Now Available on Kindle

Freshstart: 21 Days to Stop Smoking (Simon & Schuster) was originally published in 1986 as a resource guide for people wanting to quit smoking.

This book, written by The American Cancer Society, still serves as an invaluable tool for smokers today who are seeking a healthier lifestyle.

And because quitting smoking is just as important today as it was then, Freshstart is now available as an audio download for Kindle.

Stop Smoking with 21 Steps

The first three weeks of non-smoking are extremely important. While they can difficult, there are things you can do to get through this transition period and stay on the path of being smoke free.

The American Cancer Society released Freshstart as a guide for people working through this process. The book addresses people’s physical transition as well as psychological. Designed as a day-today program, Freshstart covers many of the essential topics to quitting.

Freshstart Quit Program

Freshstart: 21 Days to Stop Smoking by The American Cancer SocietyThis life-saving program discusses techniques for smokers to resist the craving for a cigarette and what types of nicotine withdrawal symptoms to expect during the quitting process.

The American Cancer Society also goes over what it calls the “three hooks of smoking” and offers tips to smokers on how to reinvent themselves as a non-smoker. As extra reassurance, the program covers the rewarding benefits of becoming a non-smoker, both for the present and for the future. For example, your breath, hair, and clothes will no longer smell, and food will taste better. Your risk of cancer and heart disease will decrease dramatically, even after a year of non-smoking. Furthermore, you’ll save thousands of dollars by kicking the habit.

With the fear of gaining weight often at the top of smokers’ “reasons not to quit” list, Freshstart features a section devoted to easing these fears and gives tips on maintaining a healthy body. For example, without a cigarette habit, you’ll be capable of increasing your physical activity.

For help quitting, please click > Freshstart: 21 Days to Stop Smoking audio program by The American Cancer Society

From the 60s! Watch This …

For help quitting, please click > Freshstart: 21 Days to Stop Smoking audio program by The American Cancer Society

Apps for Android Quit Smoking

Stop Smoking with Apps for Android

There are several apps available for android phones that are designed to help users stop their smoking habits and develop an overall healthier lifestyle.

Smoking cessation techniques such as apps can be an effective tool that help relax users, reinforce motivation, and guide them through the rewarding process of quitting.

Given the affordability and the ease of use, smokers will find these apps helpful.

Popular Apps to Help You Quit Smoking

Apps featuring hypnosis:

  • Stop Smoking—Quit Smoking and Feel Relaxed With No Weight Gain (Self Hypnosis, Guided Meditation, Subliminal, Binaural Beats, NLP): This app uses therapeutic, hypnotic audio to help reprogram smokers’ urges, concentration, and motivation during their transition from smoker to nonsmoker.
  • Stop Smoking Hypnosis: Through hypnosis sessions, smokers’ will lose the desire to smoke while remaining positive about the transition.
  • Easy Stop Smoking: Along with relaxing hypnosis techniques designed to help with the quitting process, this app provides users with background videos on how hypnosis works.
  • Quit Smoking Audio Alpha Wave Affirmations: Recondition your habits with the hypnosis offered with this app, followed by a series of positive affirmations.

Apps for Android Quit SmokingApps using graphic images to reinforce quitting:

  • Craving Buster: Using graphic images as a reminder of the consequences of smoking, this app also gives tips on creating a healthier lifestyle.
  • Quit Smoking Now: Using a four step process with graphic images, this app helps smokers get control of their smoking habit.

Track your quitting progress:

  • Cigarette Counter: This app gives smokers a statistical overview of their habit: how often they smoke, how much they spend on cigarettes, and how long it’s been since their last cigarette.
  • I Can Quit Smoking: Not only can users track their progress with this app, they can receive encouraging messages, or send messages to others who are in the quitting process.

Other smoke-free apps:

  • You Can Quit Smoking: A 12 chapter e-book written by a former smoker shows users of this app that it is possible to become smoke-free.
  • Acupressure: Treat Yourself: Learn your body’s self-healing capabilities with this app, including techniques to relieve anxiety associated with quitting smoking.
  • Kicking the Habit: A Smoker’s Guide: This app offers a step-by-step guide on quitting smoking in thirty days and tips for coping along the way.

For help quitting smoking, please click > Apps for Android: Stop Smoking