cigarette butt, stop smoking, quit

Smoking bans really do make a big difference for health. That’s the conclusion from a study published in the journal Circulation. Researchers looked at 45 studies in several countries including the U.S., England, Germany and New Zealand. The studies were designed to compare the rates of hospitalization or death due to heart attacks, strokes and respiratory diseases such as asthma or emphysema before and after legislation barring public smoking.

When people could no longer smoke in restaurants, bars or their place of work, hospital admission and deaths from these conditions dropped significantly. The reduction in hospitalization for heart attacks was approximately 15 percent, while respiratory disease hospitalizations dropped by around 24 percent. The most comprehensive bans had the biggest impact.

These findings are closely aligned with those from a separate study by the Mayo Clinic published in the Archives of Internal Medicine. Banning smoking in restaurants alone had little if any effect on heart attacks, but a comprehensive ban that covered all workplaces as well as restaurants and bars, resulted in 33 percent fewer heart attacks. The bans, combined with an increase in taxes on cigarettes, apparently encouraged more people to quit. A higher proportion of people reported that their homes were smoke free in 2010 than in 2007 before the smoking ban laws passed.

[Circulation, Oct. 30, 2012; Archives of Internal Medicine, October 22, 2012].

Get The Graedons' Favorite Home Remedies Health Guide for FREE

Join our daily email newsletter with breaking health news, prescription drug information, home remedies AND you'll get a copy of our brand new full-length health guide — for FREE!

What Do You Think?

We invite you to share your thoughts with others, but remember that our comment section is a public forum. Please do not use your full first and last name if you want to keep details of your medical history anonymous. A first name and last initial or a pseudonym is acceptable. Advice from other commenters on this website is not a substitute for medical attention. Do not stop any medicine without checking with the prescriber. Stopping medication suddenly could result in serious harm. We expect comments to be civil in tone and language. By commenting, you agree to abide by our commenting policy and website terms & conditions. Comments that do not follow these policies will not be posted. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Your cart

Shipping and discount codes are added at checkout.