World No Tobacco Day 2018: Ditch smoking and tobacco; choose heart health

World No Tobacco Day 2018: Ditch smoking and tobacco; choose heart health

Tobacco can damage your heart! This World No Tobacco Day pledge to quit smoking!

Written by Aishwarya Vaidya |Updated : May 31, 2018 12:00 PM IST

Tobacco consumption is interlinked to heart health. This year, the theme of World No Tobacco Day 2018 is tobacco and heart disease. Heart disease and cardiovascular disease are a leading cause of death in our country. Tobacco kills up to half of its users. It causes over 2 million cardiovascular deaths in our country in men and women. Tobacco usage can lead to stroke, peripheral vascular disease and coronary heart disease," explains Dr Aashish Contractor , head, department of rehabilitation and sports medicine, Sir HN Reliance Foundation Hospital.

As per World Health Organization (WHO s) report, Tobacco use and second-hand smoke exposure are major causes of cardiovascular diseases, including heart attacks and stroke, contributing to approximately 3 million deaths per year. But evidence reveals a serious lack of knowledge of the multiple health risks associated with tobacco.

Read: Heart disease: 7 ways to keep your heart fit and strong

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While many people are aware tobacco use increases the risk of cancer, there are alarming gaps in knowledge of the cardiovascular risks of tobacco use. In many countries, this low awareness is substantial; for example, in China, over 60% of the population is unaware smoking can cause heart attacks, according to the Global Adult Tobacco Survey. In India and Indonesia, more than half of adults do not know smoking can cause a stroke.


Dr Ashish Contractor explains, Smokes releases carbon dioxide and nicotine which damages the inner line of your heart artery, this starts the process of building up of plaque known as arteriosclerosis. This block blocks the blood flow to the heart muscle ultimately leading to a heart attack. It raises your BP, releases negative stress and reduces good cholesterol called HDL. Smokers are up to 4 times more likely to develop heart disease than non-smokers.

Read:World No Tobacco Day: Indian men at risk of cardiovascular disease due to tobacco

Tips to manage your cravings and triggers while quitting tobacco consumption:

Consume healthy diet

Exercise to reduce the risk of heart diseases

Drink plenty of water

Avoid staying hungry for too long

Chew gum

Divert your attention by watching movies and so on

Opt for nicotine replacement therapies and talk to your doctor about what is best for you

E-cigarettes don t help to quit smoking

Dr Ashish Contractor signs off by advising, Quit smoking. It is a road to your overall wellbeing and marinating good heart health as well.

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