Dangers of Smoking

People don’t take the dangers of smoking seriously. I lost another friend to smoking, recently. I was planning to write this page eventually, but I just got fired up at his passing. I got the news today that RJ was dead. The vascular disease from smoking finally did him in. He suffered through several times in the hospital, over several years, with stents being put in, and other vein problems.

”One thousand Americans stop smoking every day - by dying.” -- Unknown Author

RJ’s wife Joann was a smoker as well. We lost her a year ago to cancer. A year earlier we lost our friend Debbie to cancer from smoking. A year earlier our friend Vi, a smoker, died of a sudden massive heart attack.

I have a daughter who smokes. All of my friends knew how I felt about smoking. After we lost Vi I had tried to get many of them to quit but most couldn’t. For most the addictive power of the habit outweighed the future danger of smoking.

“And that cigarette you're smoking
'Bout scared me half to death
Open up the window, sucker
Let me catch my breath”
-- Three Dog Night, Mama Told Me Not To Come

All of my friends who died of smoking, died years earlier than the should have. Most were in their 40’s and 50’s. I lost my Dad at 58 from the complications of smoking. He had plaque built up that caused heart attacks and strokes. My youngest brother, a smoker died at 42 from a massive heart attack. He had other risks from drug abuse but the smoking cut his life short.

My uncle Kent, a smoker died early from heart disease at age 49. He was a persistent smoker. I’ve never really thought about how many people I’d lost to smoking. Today, it suddenly all hit home as I started writing about the people I'd lost to smoking in my life. It all started to add up to a lot of people.

If you can’t quit smoking for yourself, do it for your children, your family and your friends. One in every 5 deaths in the U.S. has smoking playing a part. Take my advice, just quit.

For those type 2 diabetics reading this page, remember smoking will hasten the Complications of Diabetes.

Smokers with diabetes are the most likely candidates for heart disease and stroke. Smoking puts diabetics at increased risk of eye disease, blindness and kidney disease. I know it’s asking a lot of a diabetic to change diet, exercise and give up smoking. It still comes down to is there something worth living for in your life? Will the dangers of smoking be real enough for you to quit? If so, choose to live.

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Page Updated 12/14/2010

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