QUIT SMOKING BY AGE 40, LIVE ALMOST AS LONG AS NON-SMOKERS

Jan 24, 2013

By Jane Brown

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If you were once a smoker, but quit before the age of 40, longevity-wise, it’s almost like you never took up the habit.  A new study out of Toronto’s St. Michael’s Hospital reveals butting out permanently before 40 can restore the life expectancies of smokers to virtually normal lengths, around age 80.  Doctor Prabhat Jha is the head of the St. Mike’s Centre for Global Health Research.  He says, “the survival curves become close to never smokers.”  He clarifies, “you’re still at a disadvantage by quitting at 40, but those that quit by age 30 have pretty much the same survival curves as never-smokers.”  Doctor Jha quickly adds its the wrong message to say that its safe to smoke until age 40 and then quit.  He says, “the chance that smokers will develop lung or other types of cancer remain higher and linger for years after they’ve quit.”  (with contributions by Toronto Star)

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