A nasty killer, cigarette was once looked upon as something good for health and of course sexy and stylish. Thanks to modern science and intense research in field of medical science, this wrong perception has changed. Today most of us know that cigarettes kill and smoking is injurious to health not only for the person who smokes but also for those who are around the smoker. But, there are many facts that go unnoticed or perhaps better said, most of us are simply unaware of those facts. Once we learn about those facts, we will get goose bumps. So if you are a smoker, we hope that once you read these 20 nasty cigarette facts, you will consider quitting this bad habit.
Nasty Cigarette Facts: 1-10
1. It is not gold, it is not oil or any other commodity that is traded most in the world. The first spot is taken by cigarettes with an average of 5 trillion cigarettes being traded between countries in a single year. Cigarettes make up a global industry with a yearly take of way over 400 billion dollars a year!
2. Cigarettes are stuffed with carcinogens. Some common names would be ammonia, carbon monoxide, hydrogen cyanide, lead, nitrogen oxide, formaldehyde and arsenic. Well, that’s not the end. There are 62 other known carcinogens present in cigarettes apart from those named.
3. According to scientists, people who smoke lose around 14 years of their lives. This however does not mean that smokers will die early or at a young age. They may simply continue to live long enough that is defined as a ‘normal lifespan’.
4. We just talked about carcinogens but did you know that cigarettes contain over 7,000 ingredients. When these ingredients burn, they produce well over 200 compound chemicals. What do these chemicals do? They are pretty nasty and damage the lungs.
5. Human urine contains a chemical compound known as urea. It is the same compound that is used by cigarette manufacturers to add flavor to cigarettes!
6. Did you know that Kent – one of the most well-known brand of cigarettes back in 1950s used crocidolite asbestos in filters? This crocidolite asbestos is today known as an active carcinogen.
7. Nicotine from inhaled cigarette smoke takes 10 seconds to reach the brain. This nicotine then reaches every part of the body including breast milk in case of lactating women who smoke. The horrible side effect of nicotine reaching breast milk is that breast feeding children gradually get nicotine dependent.
8. Approximately 20% of a cigarette is sugar. However, the effect of burning sugar on diabetic people is not known as of now.
9. On a positive note, the immune system of smokers work harder compared to non-smokers. Thus the immune system of smokers respond comparatively quicker than non-smokers whenever there is a virus attack. This however does not mean that smokers are safe! The more they smoke, the harder the immune system works and greater amounts of antioxidants in blood are used to minimize the effects of smoking. Thus, less antioxidants are available in blood. This in turn leads to a number of alternative health conditions, some of which may be lethal.
10. There is a myth that smoking after meals helps to digest faster. The truth is that after heavy meals, the liver goes into a full-throttle mode to digest the food and this may lead to some discomfort. Smoking after a meal sends a direct signal to the body that metabolism is not the priority rather, flushing out nicotine from blood and protecting blood cells are more important. Thus, metabolism takes back seat. In the meantime, the nicotine from the cigarette smoke binds to dopamine receptors in brain, causing a mild euphoric effect which helps to ease discomfort caused by heavy meals.
Nasty Cigarette Facts: 11-20
11. Approximately 10 million cigarettes are sold every single minute world wide. This sums up to around 15 billions cigarettes a day!
12. Acute myeloid leukemia is caused by benzene and cigarette smoke is a major source of benzene.
13. There are hundreds of possible additives that can be used in manufacturing cigarettes. One such additive is known as Ambergris aka Whale Vomit.
14. Studies have revealed that very small amounts of radioactive polonium and lead are present in cigarette smoke.
15. Concentration of toxins in smoldering cigarette smoke is higher than that found in exhaled smoke.
16. Nicotine present in 4 or 5 cigarettes is enough to kill an adult person when ingested whole. However, out of the total nicotine present, only 1 or 2 mg of nicotine per cigarette enters the body with smoke when a cigarette burns. The rest of the nicotine simply burns away. One cigarette typically contains 8 to 9 mg of nicotine.
17. Secondhand smoke is pretty dangerous in the sense that it contains around 70 compounds known for causing cancer. Of these compounds in secondhand smoke, 11 are classified as Group 1 Carcinogens.
18. Nearly 5 million deaths are caused by tobacco every year. This breaks down to around 1 death every one second somewhere in the world. In this particular century that we are living in, it is estimated that around 1 billion people will die of tobacco world wide.
19. Smoking causes several diseases like:
- Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease such as emphysema and chronic bronchitis.
- Coronary heart disease.
- Acute Myeloid Leukemia.
- Abdominal aortic aneurysm.
- Pancreatic, stomach, kidney, cervical, throat, oral, lung, laryngeal, esophageal and bladder cancers.
- Peptic ulcer disease.
- Slowed wound healing.
20. Smoking among pregnant women is also responsible for low birth weight of 20-30% of babies. Nearly 14% preterm deliveries are caused by smoking. Of all infant deaths, 10% are caused because of smoking during pregnancy. Full-term babies that look apparently healthy are often born with reduced lung functions and narrowed airways!