smoking has health benefits? wooohooo!
December 14, 2006 11:43pm CST
Several types of "Smoker’s Paradoxes", i.e. cases where smoking appears to have specific beneficial effects, have been observed; often the actual mechanism remains undetermined. For instance, recent studies suggest that smokers require less frequent repeated revascularization after percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI).Risk of ulcerative colitis has been frequently shown to be reduced by smokers on a dose-dependent basis; the effect is eliminated if the individual stops smoking.Smoking appears to interfere with development of Kaposi's sarcoma, breast cancer among women carrying the very high risk BRCA gene,preeclampsia, and atopic disorders such as allergic asthma. A plausible mechanism of action in these cases may be the nicotine in tobacco smoke acting as an anti-inflammatory agent and interfering with the disease process. A large body of evidence suggests that the risks of neurological diseases such as Parkinson's disease or Alzheimer's disease might be twice as high for non-smokers than for smokers. Many such papers regarding Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's Disease have been published. A plausible explanation for these cases may be the effect of nicotine, a cholinergic stimulant, decreasing the levels of acetylcholine in the smoker's brain; Parkinson's disease occurs when the effect of dopamine is less than that of acetylcholine. Opponents counter by noting that consumption of pure nicotine may be as beneficial as smoking without the risk. Other Alzheimer's studies, however, challenge these epidemiological studies on methodological grounds. A prospective Rotterdam Study found that the incidence of Alzheimer's disease is more than double for smokers as compared to non-smokers and the Honolulu Heart Program (a longitudinal cohort study) also found more than twice the risk for Alzheimer's disease among medium and heavy smokers as compared to non-smokers. The negative correlation between smoking and Parkinson's disease is recognized but causality has not been established. The relationship may be artifact (observational) based on clusters of behavioral and personality differences in the pre-Parkinsonian population versus the smoking population. Considering the high rates of physical sickness and deaths among persons suffering from schizophrenia, one of smoking's most burdensome short term benefits is its temporary effect to improve alertness and cognitive functioning in that disease.It has been postulated that the mechanism of this effect is that schizophrenics have a disturbance of nicotinic receptor functioning.
• United States
15 Dec 06
Wow....very interesting to know that some major illnesses can be slowed down due to smoking and nicotine!! I have never in my life heard that smoking is a good thing. Can I ask you where you got this information. Was it written by doctors?