Look, it's hardly news that smoking is not such a hot idea. For all the obvious reasons, not the least of which is that it will straight-up kill you. It's not even "this may
be bad for you" or "may cause cancer." It's like: Yup. You'll have a stroke and die. You're a heart attack waiting to happen. As if the smokers don't already know that.
And yet I'm at turns intrigued and disgusted by the no-holds-barred anti-smoking campaigns showing parts of people's brains exploding, and so on. Sometimes I think, my god, NO ONE is under the impression that this is good for you. We know it's death. So that means people who are smoking must know it too. You just can't even pretend. Watching people do it is almost like watching someone shoot paint-thinner right into their veins, or hitting themselves over the head with a blunt object. (The good news, though, is that anti-smoking campaigns DO work. Medical News Today reported in 2007
that smoking in NYC had dropped 20% between 2002 and 2006).
And yet here's a different, and definitely less gross-out take on why smoking is something you probably don't want to be associated with. I'll give you two that I came across recently:
1. Smoking might mean you're actually dumber than most people, according to a recent study by Tel Aviv researchers
and published on Science Daily
. Dr. Mark Weiser and his team made some interesting finds regarding the connection between the number of cigarettes young Israeli men smoked and their IQ. In short, the more a participant smoked, the lower his IQ. And the study points out that this isn't mean to show that cigarettes cause you to LOSE IQ points but that those who smoke more may simply be less capable of making smart decisions about their health. Interesting.
2. Work pressures LOWER, not increase, nicotine dependence.
This from a study published in BioMed Central's journal Tobacco Induced Diseases
, and summarized here on Science Daily
. So for those of you who see smoking as a way of coping with work stress...well, maybe you should just embrace the stress, because researchers found that, quite contrary to popular belief, increased work pressures reduce your dependence on nicotine. (The authors acknowledge that with strict building codes and no time, smokers simply can't--which leads me to wonder about the dependence thing.)
(The study also notes that "being religious, being married, and having a higher level of education have a significant effect on the prevention of nicotine dependence.")
All of this serves to support what we kinda already knew: Stay in school, and work your butt off!