Monday, December 30, 2013

"Its what got me to stop!" Success!



G. Ridgeway on Amazon reviews How To Stop Smoking Without Killing Anyone!

Mr. Bradley's book, is honestly, nothing all that special. But what is special about his book is really the fact that he does a very good job of making you smack your forehead and go "Duh!"

Of course, this is my opinion!

How to stop, does a good job of working you through your addiction, getting to the root of many of the whys, and putting the blame smack dab at where it belongs, "your feet!". His approach works off a similar, AA/NA approach, You are a smoker, you will always be a smoker. But you can choose to be a smoker that does not smoke!

Acknowledgement of using the word "quit" as a negative affirmation, and rather using "stop".

This is much more that can be said about this book, but It helped me big time!

How I found this book is that I just stopped smoking, Which I had done 3 times in the past, this time using the gum. I was having a massive case of nic fits, and hopped on YouTube and types in "How to stop a nic fit" and up popped one of his videos with three suggestions on how to do this. After watching a few more, I had gained back my will to stop, and in a very strong way.

Many of the things he suggests in the book, I had been thinking myself! But kept second guessing myself because of the the common, and over told way we are commonly told to stop now.

You need Gum, Patches, or a medication to stop! As where Bradley, strongly suggests you go cold turkey, in which I cant agree more.

Pick up this book, read it, pick a day, And STOP! Then read it again. You'll spend a few days wanting to die, and after a week you'll be through your withdrawals and really be free, you wont have to then rely on your patch or whatever. Awesome book, and worth every penny!

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Cigarettes can make you stupid

Did you know that a smoker's risk of dying from a stroke nearly double?  So often we put the attention on the lungs and heart, but what are cigarettes doing to your brain?  In a recent post in the Independent, Charlie Cooper talks about a TV commercial which will "bring to life the toxic cycle of dirty blood" that is caused be breathing cigarette smoke.  Not only can smoking double your chance of a stroke, it is also related to cognitive decline and dementia.

People tend to turn a blind eye to the consequences of smoking in favor of the short term pleasure and stress relief smoking brings.  Smoking is still the biggest cause of premature death and one in two smokers will die early from a disease directly related to smoking.

While damage to the brain from smoking tends to get over looked, it makes since.  Look at the obvious.  Deprive the brain from oxygen, what happens?  It dies.  Period.  Add in the fact that cigarettes contain chemicals like arsenic and cyanide which can cause massive damage to the cells in the brain.  Not only will that increasing the risk of stroke, but it will also contribute to cognitive decline and dementia.  

In fact, one study, done at the University College London shows that cognitive decline in men can be up to 38 per cent faster for a regular smoker.  

Basically, at that rate you may very well intend to quit, but you forget to do it!  The good news is, if you tie a string to your finger so you remember to not smoke, your body can show near full recovery within five years back in the non-smoking section.

Bottom line is smoking will harm you in one way or another.  But it becomes clear that the intensity of the addiction is too strong for many people to respond logically to the information that this will to your untimely death and simply stop.  Somehow smoking has become more important than living a healthy life.  Nicotine effectively rewires the brain to believe it is a necessity.  The process of getting back to the non-smoking section requires that you rewire your brain back to it's original programming and this will meet with some real resistance from the body and the brain.  The beauty of the mind and body is that it can and will overcome nicotine addiction.  There are 7 steps to do this effectively and permanently and I cover them in my book, How To Stop Smoking Without Killing Anyone, but if I can sum them up for here, it looks like this:

1.  Decide to stop 
2.  Understand your history so you can not repeat it
3.  Commit to a higher purpose
4.  Stay in the now - right now you're not smoking - stay in that place
5.  Eat right and get regular exercise
6.  Become a better human
7.  Repeat daily - hourly or by the minute if you have to

Simple yet not easy but very doable and doable without NRT or drugs like Chantix.  You had the power to start which means you have the power to stop!

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Woman dies from burns suffered during cigarette-smoking accident

Stop Smoking Penn State!  A Monroe County, Pennsylvania woman died Monday 12/23 from burns suffered from smoking a cigarette while using oxygen.  The Lehigh County Coroner's office said it took her more than two weeks to succumb to her injuries.

Carol Hanna, 51, of East Stroudsburg, was pronounced dead at 7:40 a.m. Monday at Lehigh Valley Hospital-Cedar Crest.  The Coroner Scott Grim said that he ruled the cause of death as complications from burn injuries and ruled the manner of death an accident.

Hanna was burned on Dec. 6 inside her home on East Brown Street, Grim said.

Lesson is obvious and heartfelt as Carol very well could be someone's mother, grandmother, sister, aunt and friend.  It is also a sad and tragic loss.

I will go out on a limb here and assume that if she was on oxygen, she was already suffering from a smoking related illness and yet still unable to stop.  How powerful is nicotine and it's addiction?  People willingly put their lives in danger on multiple levels.  First, there's the cancer and emphysema but now once you have that you continue to smoke?  This is no different that heroin or alcoholism.

There is the possibility of reclaiming control though.  It is a struggle but people do it and survive.  They go on to live a much longer fruitful life.

If you smoke, stop now.  You are robbing yourself and your family of precious time on this planet.  If you have a loved one like Carol.  Help them to stop.  All death related to smoking is tragic.  Tragedy by definition is always avoidable, meaning, it didn't have to happen that way.  Choose life and help others do the same.  No one needs to suffer that way.  Ever.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Vaper Shark whores out Santa and picks up where big tobacco left off

In Florida, Vaper Shark posts a billboard showing Santa Claus smoking an e-cigarette or rather "vaping" as they like to call it.  Vaping is simply a politically correct propaganda term to avoid calling it what it is.  Smoking.  Ironically, Vaper Shark is really just taking it's que from the Big Tobacco marketing playbook from back in the day.

The jury is still well out on the safety of the e-cigarette, but it can go without saying that it seems to be better than a traditional cigarette.  How much safer is yet to be seen and here is my primary concern and argument...

It has been known for a very long time that cigarettes are bad for you.  However, tobacco companies back
in the day promoted cigarettes as healthy, good for you, glamorous, cool, and sophisticated.  America bought in.  Hook, line and sinker.  Even after it was clear that this may not be a good idea after all, tobacco companies still promoted smoking.  They did everything to make it seem harmless and not addictive.  They would go so far as to show Santa Claus smoking a cigarette.  Looking at cigarette adds from the 40's and 50's and the celebrity endorsements.  Jack Webb of Dragnet fame endorsed Fatima cigarettes and died of a heart attack when he was just 62.  Even the people promoting the things are dying prematurely.

And now here we are, 2013 and Santa Claus once again on the payroll of the latest and greatest nicotine delivery device.

If I were you, I'd stop on the virtue of that alone.  Because if history is repeating itself, it won't be long before we find out that "vaping" wasn't as safe as we all thought it was.  It wasn't the solution after all.  That it has deadly consequences just like traditional cigarettes.

If it's safer for you to put your head in the sand and roll the dice, go for it, but for me...  I'm proud in the knowledge that I took back control over my mood, my actions, and spending from nicotine and addiction.  There are multiple ways to conquer nicotine and smoking.  An whether you get want you need to finally stop from my book, from a tea or a powerful article, or the look on your kids face, find a way to stop.  There's no quick fix, no magic pill, no easy way.  It's a grind and a badge of honor.  Jack Webb carried a badge...  and a monkey on his back.  All the way to the grave...  How 'bout you?


Wednesday, December 4, 2013

It's not too late to stop smoking!

So we all know that cigarette smoking has been linked to an increased risk of heart disease, lung disease, cancer, and death.  BUT!  When you finally do stop, how does that affect your risk of developing these health problems?  Yes, death is a very serious health problem.  Who is writing this crap?

There once was a issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, where investigators reported that women who stopped the smoking will notice a major and quick decline in their risk of death from heart disease.

The investigation looked at data from over 100,000 participants in the Nurses’ Health Study.  Dates ranged from 1980 to 2004. The participants in the study were classified as "never smokers", "current smokers", and "past smokers". The smokers were categorized even further by the age at which they started smoking.

What was found was that 61% of the full benefit of stopping as it related to heart disease-related death was realized within the first five (5) years after stopping smoking.  But wait, there's more!  Over 40% of the benefit of quitting with regard to stroke-related death was realized in that same time period.

It takes longer for a smoker’s risk associated with lung disease and smoking-related cancers to approach that of a person who has never smoked, but the risk does decrease at 20 years or afterwards. The investigation also showed that smokers who had started smoking at a younger age had a higher risk of respiratory disease, lung cancer, and other smoking-related cancer deaths.

BOTTOM LINE KIDS:  it is NEVER too late to stop, does not matter how long you've been smoking. It is still possible to reverse a majority of the harm caused by cigarette smoke and experience the all the benefits of being able to say, I haven't had a cigarette in 5 years, 5 weeks, 5 months, 5 days.

You can totally do this!  www.StopDontQuit.com

Monday, December 2, 2013

How to remove the smell of cigarette smoke

How do I get cigarette smoke smell out of the house?  Have you recently stopped smoking?  Are you also now fully understanding what all the fuss was about with regards to the smell of cigarettes?  Do you have clothing and furniture that needs a fumigation like yesterday?  Fear not, it can be done!  Also, non-smokers who have been exposed.  For example, you live in an apartment or work with other people who smoke, here are some ways to eliminate the smell of smoke from your person, home, car and wardrobe.

Smokers looking to remove the odor should start by picking up a copy of How To Stop Smoking Without Killing Anyone.  That will teach you how to stop smoking and there by eliminate any future possibility of the smell.  Once that's handled, next step is to move out.  Otherwise you'll have to clean everything!

Steam vac for the carpets, curtains and furniture.  Wash and even consider repainting the walls.  Pending on the size of the habit, this may even prove too big a job and it might make since to hire once of those CSI clean up teams.  Think about how you'll make their day if all they have to do is help you remove the smell of smoke from your house?

Consider this, they very well may wind up at your house anyway.  You keep smoking and wind up falling asleep with a cigarette and burn the house down.  They'll be there eventually with a much bigger mess.  Or what if you have a heart attack in your sleep and no one discovers you for 8 days?  And it's August!  How's that for a smell to remove.  Or maybe your wife takes a kitchen knife to you after smelling smoke on your hands after you told her for the umpteenth time you're really going to quit this time?

For the non-smokers whose got the smell creeping in on you, or who had a smoker over, give the place a solid going over.  Then try one my dear Mother's tricks.  Cotton Balls secretly placed around the house with vanilla extract soaked in them.  My house growing up typically smelled like Christmas cookies all year.

If smoke is creeping in, locate the source and see how to plug it or block it.  If you're in an apartment and this is your neighbor, ask them to smoke outside or in a different room.  If this proves unsuccessful, move your television and surround sound system right next to the adjoining wall.  Also, every time you leave, drop an annoying piece of music on the stereo and turn it up so it resonates for them, but not so much for the building.  If you really want to inflict some serious pain here, let me suggest Rebecca Black's Friday or James Blunt's Your Beautiful.  In fact, an "irritating as 7&@K" playlist for your ipod may prove quite useful.

Since we're on the subject of smoke odor and useful, if you're still committed to smoking, try putting Kitty Litter in your ashtray just to add validity when some says (or thinks) your place smells like crap!

Last tip is when the jacket smells like the bar you were at last night or your buddy's car, fire up the Fabreze and then seal that coat in a plastic bag with a few dryer sheets.  I sold cars for several years and this trick was a great way to deodorize a  used car that was a wee bit on the stinky side.  Also good for removing the smell of spilled bong water...  at least that's what I've been told.

Look, becoming a non-smoker again stinks (pun very much intended) and being a smoker also stinks (on multiple levels).  If you're over it and it's time to kick this silly habit, there's no reason it has to totally suck and that you can't have a few laughs during the process.  Attitude truly is everything and even more so when trying to break a habit that's killing you.  Take a read or two of my book.  You will learn how to stop without quitting, how to set your mind up to actually stop this time and also how to reclaim your lung capacity.  You decided to start, now let this book help you decide to stop.  www.StopDontQuit.com 


  

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Smoke free dining is in good taste!

While smoking in a restaurant in California has been illegal for quite some time, it looks like one of my favorite Italian restaurants was ahead of the curve!   Way to go Del's!

Big Tobacco Whistle Blower Dead at 72

The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Merrell Williams Jr. has died.  Mr. Williams was a paralegal who
AP Photo
stole insider documents, from the third-largest cigarette company in the nation, which led to a massive financial settlement that forever altered the public-policy debate over cigarettes and tobacco.

Merrell Williams, passed away from a heart attack on Nov. 18 at age 72.  He said the he decided to stop up smoking after reading documents, that showed that tobacco executives knew that cigarettes were addictive and that they caused cancer.  Add to that they were aware that the companies were marketing cigarettes to minors.

In 1998, after multiple state sponsored lawsuits, Big Tobacco agreed to settlements that totaled about $240 billion.

Mike Moore, who filed the first of the suits in 1994 as Mississippi attorney general said that Merrell "was a hero of that fight."

Not as well known and The Insider, Jeffrey Wigand,  Mr. Williams was the guy who got the documents out that Jeffry Wigand was asked to examine and authenticate.

"Those documents were the heart of the litigation," according to Mr. Wigand.

"He was deeply proud of his role," said his daughter, Jennifer Smith. And who know how many lives he ultimately saved or at least improved!  Ultimately, Big Tobacco's shady dealings was a MASSIVE motivator for me wanting to stop and help others stop too.

Thank you Merrell Williams for your bravery and for taking a stand!

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Just what are you waiting for and why are you waiting?

"Just what are you waiting for and why are you waiting?"  

This excellent question comes to us straight from the mind of Napoleon Hill.  He is a man who studied success with the same vigor as Tesla studied electricity.  Success comes in many levels and tiers.  So if we look at Mr. Hill's words from the point of view one who is looking for success in the battle over cigarettes and nicotine, allow me to repeat the question, "Just what are you waiting for and why are you waiting?" 

What else does Napoleon Hill have to say on this?

"Far too many people spend their entire lives waiting for that glorious day when the perfect opportunity presents itself to them."  Are you waiting for the "right time" to stop smoking?  

"Too late, they realize that each day held opportunity for those who sought it out. If you have not formulated a plan for what you would like to accomplish in your life, don’t waste another minute." 

FYI, there is no right time to stop.  Actually there is, the time is now.

"When you have Definiteness of Purpose fueled by a burning desire to reach your objectives, nothing can stand in your way."  

For many people, they need a purpose greater than them self to motivate them to stop smoking.  There is nothing wrong with that.  Saying something like, 'I won't stop smoking for anyone else, when I stop smoking, it'll be for me.' That's an excuse, not a reason.  Find a purpose greater than you.  Your kids, your spouse, your future kids, your family, your community, your company, whatever the purpose as long as it is bigger than just you.

"Don’t wait around waiting for life to happen to you. When you know what you want and how you expect to earn it, life will agree to your terms, not the other way around."  

This is crucial.  For those struggling with addiction, nicotine is happening to you.  Life is happening to you because every time you have a moment, positive or negative, you need to have a cigarette to go with your moment.  And you KNOW what I'm talking about.  So, you can be the cause of your life or the effect of circumstance.  There is no requirement anywhere in the handbook of life that says you are to be a victim.  Take back control of yourself, your body, your mind and spirit.  Stopping smoking is you taking the power back.  You gave it up, maybe not knowingly, but you did.  This is your time, your moment, your opportunity to stand up for yourself, fight and take it all back.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Quit Tea: A natural way to stop smoking

Request a FREE Sample
Why QuitTea?  Trying to quit smoking?  There's a unique tea recipe the can help.  While a cup of green tea may help, what if there was a potent herbal blend tea to help with the effects of withdrawal?  Just because you decided to go cold turkey, doesn't mean you can't get the support you need to get through the first 3-7 days.  You can stop and there is no need for a pharmacists to drug you, no need for nicotine laced gum, patches and/or e-cigarettes.

The task of becoming a non-smoker again is a simple one.  [NOTE:  "non-smoker again" means you weren't born with a cigarette in your mouth, which means you've been a non-smoker before, you can do it again.  Also, "simple" does not mean easy.  There's no easy way out, it's hard.  Simple?  Yes.  Easy?  No.]

What if you could return to being a non-smoker without having to quit?  Hold on now!  Stick around for another second and hear me out, because this is the entire premise of  my book.  You're brain is addicted to and chemically altered by nicotine.  The concept of never smoking a cigarette again is as foreign to you as not drinking water ever again.  Now add to this, the fact that on multiple occasions you have gone without a cigarette for an uncomfortably long period of time.  You've been able to stop without quitting.  How did you do it?  Long flight?  Long movie?  Long meeting or shift with no break?  Can't smoke?  You got through it somehow and no body got hurt, right?  How?  You knew you'd get through it because you knew you'd smoke again.  Still with me?  Is it possible to stop, but don't quit?  Yes.  I stopped in 2002 and haven't had a cigarette since, but I ain't no quitter either!  12 years later and I still consider myself a smoker who doesn't smoke.  I call this "The Carrot Dangling Technique" and with the right mindset, it works perfectly.

When you read How To Stop Smoking Without Killing Anyone, you'll learn how to get that mindset.  How to get your mind right, how to live in the now and above and beyond, how to take back control of your state from nicotine and Big Tobacco.  Wait, I thought we were talking about tea...?

[Insert Quit Tea here!]

Who doesn't need help?  Kicking the habit is near impossible.  It sucks, it's stressful, your brain's freaking out, you feel like killing innocent people who look at you wrong, it's terrible.  It's also part of the process.  It's part of earning it.  You need to grind this out.  But who says you have to go it alone?

QuitTea was designed to take the edge off.  Weightlifters need a spot when the weight gets heavy.  Ain't nothing wrong with that either because it's how you get stronger.

What I like about QuitTea is that it's all natural.  The ingredients are listed here (I'll cover a few in a second) and they make for a nice herbal blend to ease withdrawal and support the detoxing of the body.  It comes in a box of 20 (what else do we know that comes in packs of 20?) and the cherry on the top for me is the hand to mouth action that comes from sipping tea.  Very similar to smoking in that respect.  You also get the lip stimulation and the bringing of something into the mouth.  Just don't inhale QuitTea as that would be bad.  Probably don't want to smoke it either as that would defeat the purpose entirely!

Some of the ingredients like St Johns Wort, I actually recommend in my book and others include Valerian Root, which is great for chilling out and there's also Red Clover, Licorice, Ginger, Burdock, Oregano, and Fennel for cleansing. Conveniently, there's the right amount of spice and sweet here to make for a flavorful tea and bust through the flavor loss from smoking.  You'll probably notice after a few days on QuitTea that it tastes stronger as you taste buds repair.  I think this would be a good tea even if you're not a smoker.

Final word.  The very name of this tea flies in the face of the premise of my book.  That being said...  what are you going to do?  I'm OK with it if you are.  Personally, I'd have called it Stop Tea.  Perhaps if you decide to try it you can cross out the word "quit" on the box and write in "stop."  ;-)  I'm confident you'll be able to handle it.  Look, it's time to stop.  You owe it to yourself and the people who love you to bring the best you to the party of life.  It's impossible to bring the best you to the party and smoke.  However you get it done, just get it done!  Myself and the crew at QuitTea are here to help you.  QuitTea's quit, I've "stopped" and we both survived and made it through to the other side.  Now it's your turn, so get a copy of my book, make a nice cup of tea and handle it!

What Are the Ingredients In Quit Tea?

Here, as promised, from their site, are the Ingredients In QuitTea

Herbs & Spices That Make Quit Tea The Best Stop Smoking Method

Quit Tea is made from a blend of herbs and spices, that will help you stop smoking naturally. All herbs are safe, healthy, and natural. Below is a description of each ingredient and how combined they make the best stop smoking method available.

Valerian Root
Valerian Root is a powerful relaxant, helpful for reducing anxiety, stress, and nervousness. The root from the Valerian plant has been used since ancient Greek and Roman times as a cure for insomnia and as a muscle relaxant.

Sarsaparilla
The root of the Sarsaparilla plant is used to increase energy, promote the excretion of fluids, and restoring natural lung function. Other parts of the Sarsaparilla plant are used commonly to flavor soft drinks.

St. John’s Wort
St. John’s Wort is a herb used to treat mild depression and stress, helping elevate mood enhancing chemicals in the brain. It has been studied against many prescription medicines and has been proven effective, with far fewer side effects.

Red Clover
Red Clover is used as an appetite suppressant and for purifying the blood. Red Clover also helps the lung regenerate by acting as an expectorant, antispasmodic, and it also has relaxing effects. The flower of the red clover plant is used and is safe for use in high levels.

Licorice
Licorice root is used to increase the fluidity of mucus in the lungs and promote adrenal gland functions (boost energy). Compounds in the Licorice root improve the quality of the mucus that lungs produce to speed up recovery of the lungs after quitting smoking.

Cinnamon
Cinnamon is a common household spice used in Quit Tea for flavor and to help enhance digestion, increase the metabolism of body fat, and work as an appetite suppressant.

Ginger
Ginger is used in this tea to fight inflammation, increase circulation, and reduce headaches and nausea. Ginger, beside being a wonderful flavoring, is known for helping aid digestion.

Burdock Flower
Burdock is a root known for having powerful detoxification properties, purifying the blood and organs. Burdock is safe and is harvested and consumed as a root vegetables in many Asian countries.

Cloves
Cloves are used in many countries as a pain killer, and in food for its flavor and as a digestive aid. Cloves contain Eugenol, which is an antiseptic and antiparasitic compound.

Oregano
Oregano is a highly beneficial antioxidant as well as a flavorant. Oregano has been used since ancient Roman and Greek times to cure stomach and lung problems. It has high levels of phenolic acids and flavanoids, and has been shown to act as an antiseptic, expectorant, and stimulant.

Fennel
Fennel is an appetite suppressant and is helps clear the lungs. The root of the Fennel plant is also useful for promoting the functioning of the kidneys, liver, and spleen, all essential for detoxifying the body. Fennel is commonly used in many food dishes.

Cayenne Pepper
Cayenne Pepper is important for aiding digestion, improving circulation, and acting as a catalyst for other herbs. Cayenne Pepper adds a useful flavor because the oils act to desensitize the taste receptors that receive pleasure from smoking cigarettes, which will make smoking seem unpleasant.

Black Pepper
Black Pepper is a spice used for flavoring the tea, as well as aiding digestion. In ancient times Black Pepper was believed to help with a whole list of problems, everything from pain to insomnia.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

November is Lung Cancer Awareness Month

Stop Smoking in November - November is lung cancer awareness month - do you know the facts about lung cancer?  Take a look at these facts.  Will you find yourself one of these statistics?  The sooner you recognize you are the deciding factor between becoming another statistic or a victor in the war on nicotine and addiction, the sooner you can take back your power!  www.StopDontQuit.com


Monday, November 4, 2013

What happens when you stop smoking (for real)

Just STOP!  You don't have to quit.  That's the slogan, the tag line, "Stop, don't quit."  It's too hard to quit anyway.  When you get on a plane, you stop.  When you go into a movie theatre, you stop.  When you're at a restaurant, you stop.  You're stopping all the time.  Something happens in your mind that makes is possible for you to not smoke in that given moment.  Imagine you're on a 6 hour flight.  What do you do?  Sure it's uncomfortable, but you handle it right?  So, as you go through the process of not smoking on day one, here are some things from Daily Infographic to use to stay motivated.

"There are parts of routine that are essential, that if tampered with, would devastate a person’s day. Without a doubt, there are things that everyone knows are healthy or unhealthy.

Smoking cigarettes provides a mental boost at most, but that’s it. There is no aspect other than appeasing the craving that could be healthy. In fact, being temporarily anxious and dealing with the craving is probably the healthiest thing for you. There is nothing healthy about smoking because it allows the worsening of your health.

Cancer is on the rise in the world. It is important that no one puts themselves at unnecessary risks of getting a disease that has taken so many–by indulging in a habit that isn’t moderated. An addiction to cigarettes isn’t a 3 a day type of addiction. It’s not like having a drink or getting high. Being a smoker is an all day event. Think about the time and money being lost. [Stopping] is worth it. (via http://dailyinfographic.com/what-happens-when-smokers-quit-infographic )"


Sunday, November 3, 2013

Don't believe e-cigarette hype (reprinted in entirety)

Stop Smoking Virginia - From The Daily Progress in Virginia, comes a thought provoking article from Janie Heath.  A PhD and is the Thomas A. Saunders III Professor of Nursing and associate dean for academic programs at the University of Virginia School of Nursing.  Here it is for your consideration.  Comments below are welcomed and encouraged.

"It’s no joke. And e-cigarettes are uniquely poised at the moment to either be regulated by the government as tobacco products should be or to enjoy looser, less strict regulation.

Companies that make e-cigarettes — battery-operated sticks made of plastic or metal that release vapor, rather than smoke, to deliver nicotine in a warmed mist of diethylene glycol, propylene glycol and carcinogenic nitrosamines — are counting on the latter. These companies hope that e-cigarettes — already a $2 billion a year endeavor — might just save a dying U.S. tobacco industry.

Using the swaying power of actors Stephen Dorff and Jenny McCarthy, companies such as Blucigs — which offers nicotine delivered in flavors from pina colada to peach schnapps, sure to appeal to youngsters who gravitate toward the exploding market of flavored cigarettes — these companies are ramping up for a fight. Promises like “You can smoke at a basketball game if you want to” and “We’re all adults — it’s time we take our freedom back” offer smokers and would-be e-cigarette buyers a chance to tap into the bygone era when smoking was cool and its deadly health effects were not known.

The thing is, today we know better.

What we don’t know is the science as to whether e-cigarettes are a safer alternative or just more of the same. As a professional nurse, I wager the latter.

The American Lung Association is very concerned about the potential health consequences of electronic cigarettes, as well as claims that they can be used to help smokers quit.

There is no government oversight of these products. And, absent oversight by the Federal Drug Administration, there is no way for the public health and medical community or for consumers to know what chemicals are actually contained in e-cigarettes — or what the short- and long-term health implications of using them or being around them might be.

It’s why the American Lung Association is calling on the Obama administration to propose meaningful regulation of these products to protect to public health.

There are roughly 250 different e-cigarette products on the market today. Based on evidence so far, there’s nothing safe about them —not even as a gateway to cessation. In the FDA’s own research on e-cigarettes from 2009, lab tests revealed detectable levels of toxic cancer-causing chemicals, including an ingredient used in anti-freeze, in two leading brands of e-cigarettes and 18 various cartridges. Other analyses have found formaldehyde, benzene and tobacco-specific nitrosamines, a carcinogen, in e-cigarettes’ emissions, pointing out the poisons in secondhand exposure.

This why it’s urgent for the FDA to immediately begin its regulatory oversight of e-cigarettes, which would include ingredient disclosures by manufacturers. While there is certainly more to learn, it’s clear there is a great deal to be concerned about — especially in the absence of any sort of oversight.

As a former smoker myself, I understand all too well the hope for a safe and evidence-based way to break the habit — but e-cigarettes just are not the way. There is no magic bullet; quitting smoking is incredibly hard to do. Nicotine’s the reason. And at present, there is no evidence supporting e-cigarettes as the best way to kick the habit.

Americans have the freedom to decide, of course, what they do with their bodies — and knowing what we know about the debilitating diseases and deaths faced by many former smokers, I think we will choose to kick the e-cigarette habit before it garners a foothold. E-cigarettes might seem to tout a pathway to tobacco-less freedom, but they entangle individuals in the same poisons as their smoke-filled grandfathers.

We’re all adults here: It’s time to take back our freedom — and choose health for ourselves, our children and communities."

e-Meth spoof on SNL makes strong ironic point

Saturday Night Live took an ironic dig on e-cigarettes recently with their spoof commercial called e-meth where there make fun of the "safety" claimed by e-cigarette companies.

Is this just good humor or could it be foreshadowing?

After all, the e-cigarette is just a delivery device for nicotine...  or whatever else you can put in that little cylinder.  

Saturday, November 2, 2013

New York Raises Smoking Age To 21

Stop Smoking New York - The city the never sleeps, New York, is banning smoking for those who haven't
hit 21 yet.  Mayor Bloomberg, once again has decided to decide for the citizenry of the Big Apple.

READ THE WHOLE ARTICLE HERE:  http://www.wjla.com/articles/2013/10/new-york-city-bans-cigarette-sales-to-smokers-under-21-96227.html 

When you're 18, you get to vote.  When you're 16, you get your licence to drive.  So, apparently the government and Mayor Bloomberg, believes I mature enough to decide who gets to be president and capable to operate a motor vehicle, but NOT mature enough to decide to smoke a cigarette or have a drink.

This is, without a doubt, simply foolish.

REALITY CHECKS:

#1.  People are going to smoke.  If you're 14 and want to smoke, you'll find a way.  I did.  When I was 18, I new everything anyway, so what makes you think you're going to keep me from smoking?  Trust me, I'll figure it out.

#2.  James Dean.  Sorry, it's out there.  "I got the bullets!"  Rebels man.  All of 'em.  As long as cigarettes exist, ironically, youth will connect smoking with independence, freedom, self expression, and individuality.  Making it harder to get cigarettes only adds fuel to that fire.

#3.  How well did prohibition work in New York city?  Organized crime in New York must be throwing a party right now!

#4.  Lost tax revenue will need to get replaced somewhere.  This could give Bloomberg the leverage he needs to tax sugary beverages or what ever else he decides is good for his people.

While I'm not a advocate for smoking cigarettes, and as a smoker who doesn't smoke anymore, I still do not believe this law is in line with the personal freedoms this country guarantees nor is it in line with man's innate ability to choose his fate.

I also am in favor of lowering the drinking age to 18 for the very same reasons.

Prevention starts in the home.  And it needs to start significantly earlier than the gap between 18 and 21.  If you really want to "go there" then there should be a law banning smoking by parents.  It should be illegal for a parent to smoke.  Parents caught smoking wouldn't just receive a fine, but instead be subject to CPS for endangering the life of a child.  That somehow makes more since to me then raising the smoking age.

Peanut gallery's open...  what do you think?  Raising the smoking age, good idea, bad idea, doesn't matter?  Let me hear from you now!

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Should rehabs have a no smoking policy?

Stop Smoking MONTPELIER, Vt. - The Department of Health in Vermont is considering making it's state funded addiction treatment centers tobacco free according to an article in the San Francisco Gate.  There are already several states doing this as recent studies have shown that people actually do better with both their addictions and smoking cessation if they stop everything at once.

Many take a triage approach to treating addiction.  If you got a guy on Meth who drinks and smokes, logically, let's handle the meth first, then tackle the booze and we can deal with the cigarettes later.  Logic clearly based on the greater or lesser of evils.

Makes since to me too.  However, if you're just an alcoholic and nicotine addict, then what?  My personal story will show I wasn't drinking when I stopped smoking, but 3 years later found myself, still not smoking but drinking heavily.  Why?  I never handled the reasons why I was self medicating in the first place.  I had some grief that needed to get worked out.  I wonder if I had truly tackled the underlining issues of addiction when I stopped smoking, if alcoholism would have reared it's ugly head a couple years later.

I wrote my book, How To Stop Smoking Without Killing Anyone, to empower people to handle to root, the cause, the reason behind the addiction.  It wasn't about treating a symptom, but setting the method to handle the dis-ease.

For many, cigarettes go hand in hand with "recovery."  I'm now more of an all or nothing kind of rip the band-aid off in one shot guy.  For many, I don't believe it should be a triage type of drug treatment.  I believe their will be a greater opportunity for success by digging in, sucking it up and addressing the addiction aspect.  Why fight addiction more than once?  Seems silly to me and a waste of time.  If a person wants to be free of addiction, treat that.  Not just their "problem" with Meth or alcohol.  Treat the addiction, not just the substance they've chosen to to abuse.

Obviously, humans are different and unique but ultimately we all boil down to a very specific set of needs, wants and desires that motivate our every move and guide our decisions.  The effective treatment of addiction must come from treating the cause and not the symptom.  Alcoholism, nicotine, hard drug abuse are symptoms to a greater dis-ease.

Notice, I'm not calling addiction a disease but a dis-ease.  Addicts, myself included, have successfully met their basic human needs through an addictive behavior.  Enabling and then empowering the addict to recognize that he or she actually has a choice in the matter is the first step.  Next is healing the cause of the dis-ease coupled with introducing a new, positive, healthier alternative behavior.  These are the real keys to success with handling any addiction.  Replacing one addiction with another or allowing one to exist while the other get's handled seems ultimately ineffective at delivering any real and lasting change or increase in real quality of life.

But what's your take?  I want to hear it from you?  How do you want to get clean and sober first, then second, is that the most effective?  Who's answering that question?  Your addicted brain or the real you underneath?

Monday, October 28, 2013

Who does Jacob Sullum work for, really?

http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/lunatic
Stop Smoking New York - Jacob Sullum syndicated writer for the New York post and senior editor at
Reason magazine has decided that there's a lunatic war going on over e-cigarettes.  On October 23rd, Jacob and the NY Post published an article titled, "Lunatic War On E-Cigarettes."  In the article he asserts that people against e-cigarettes are seeing the issue "through a fog of prejudice."

READ ORIGINAL ARTICLE:  http://nypost.com/2013/10/23/the-lunatic-war-on-e-cigarettes/

The article goes on to talk about the current proposed regulations of e-cigarettes by the FDA and how they are looking to treat it as a tobacco product.

Sullum takes issue with this and is concerned that it will restrict information and access to these products which in turn will hinder cigarette smokers from making the switch over to e-cigarettes and consequently raising smoking related illness and death. He then goes on to point out the significant difference between cigarette smoke and "vapor" and that the e-cigarette clinically and evidently has less carcinogenic material.  Technically, the e-cigarette is the lesser of two evils and Jacob Sullum makes a strong case for that.

Moving forward Sullum talks about the more zealous of the anti-e-cigarette movement quoting Maria Azzarelli of the Southern Nevada Health District as saying “We’re very concerned that what [was] becoming passé — smoking — is now coming back.”

In the opinion of this smoker, who doesn't smoke anymore (or vape), this is straight up stupid.  Smoking is, was and forever will be sexy to some and disgusting to others.  Vaping will not have anything to do with whether or not people choose to smoke a dried up leaf rolled in paper and cotton.  E-cigarettes as a gateway drug, while plausible, is ultimately ludicrous.  Bottom line on that deal is you either succumb to an addiction to nicotine or you do not.  The reality of the e-cigarette is now consumers have one additional option to get their nicotine fix.  And this new option is all wrapped up in a nice little "healthy alternative to smoking" package.

Sullum wraps it all by saying, "It’s in the shift from the former category to the latter that the disease-reducing potential of e-cigarettes lies. Impeding that transition by imposing arbitrary restrictions on e-cigarette advertising, sales and flavors would be a literally fatal error."

Here's where I disagree.  There is a lot of  hype and fear mongering about the ambiguity of the long term effects of vaping.  Yes, clearly, based on cited ingredients the e-cigarette is safer compared to a traditional cigarette.

With that in mind, e-cigarettes also contain more than just nicotine, flavoring and propolyne glycol.  A recent study showed e-cigarettes had 10 different chemicals included on the California Prop 65 list of chemicals known to cause cancer.  The question is; is the amount of those chemicals in the e-cigarette, enough to cause any real harm over time?  If used responsibly, can the e-cigarette be used to reduce traditional smoking and aid in cessation?  Possible.  People have used the patch and the gum to stop smoking.  In a real world study, people showed a 9.2% success rate with the patch, 8.4% with the gum.  Cold Turkey's at 11% buy the way... [insert shameless plug for my book here]  What that means though is the other 90.8% and 91.6% respectively, went back to smoking after 6 months.  Also, the people in that study were on their 5th attempt.

Now, back to the e-cigerette, because here in lies the rub...

Who's making them e-cigarettes anyway?  Who just happens to be buying up e-cigarette companies left and right?  Who's also been know to chemically enhance the addictive properties of their product?  Who's in the nicotine delivery business?  Big Tobacco that's who?  They have, over the last 80+ years exhibited seriously questionable ethics or morals with their tobacco products.  And that's putting it lightly.  So if Big Tobacco is hedging their bets and looking to get a piece of the vaping pie, then I want the FDA, CDC, HHS, FTC, ATF and any other Government agency with initials to be keeping a strong eye on what is happening in that industry.  Big Tobacco is moving in on e-cigarettes and that should raise a MASSIVE red flag for anyone actually interested in getting off nicotine.

BOTTOM LINE:  Regular old school James Dean cool cigarette or new bitchen Stephen Dorff blu e-cigarette, it's still a delivery device for nicotine being sold to consumers by a group who clearly can't be trusted.  Ever.  People have every right to commit passive aggressive suicide by smoking tobacco on a regular basis and they have every right to self-medicate with nicotine as long as they're not hurting others in the process.  (i.e. Wanna get drunk and drink your life away?  OK.  DUI?  Not OK.)  Should the FDA regulate the crap out of them?  Absolutely.  Because, if Big Tobacco's involved, it will only be a matter of time before something fishy's going on.

While nicotine is (and should be) legal, it is still a drug.  It's addictive properties are as strong as heroin and it is lethal around 60mg.  The idea of weening off a drug has merit, however, it fails significantly more often than it succeeds.  Any company in the nicotine delivery business, can't afford to have you succeed in getting off nicotine and therefor should be watched closely.  Will the regulations restrict the information going out or just make sure it's real and accurate?  If you haven't seen cigarette marketing from the 40's and 50's go do a little research (or poke around this blog) and you'll see what I'm talking about.  Regulate?  If need be to keep these people in check, absolutely.

To answer Sullum's concern about the regulation of e-cigarettes causing unnecessary loss of life...  who's the real lunatic anyway?

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Virginia health district to survey businesses and work sites about tobacco policies

Newsies smoking at work back in the day!
Stop Smoking Virginia!  The Central Virginia Health District is surveying tobacco and cigarettes in the workplace.  They're looking to businesses and work sites to determine where existing tobacco use policies can be found. The survey is designed to measure what interest there is from local business and job sites in implementing real tobacco-free policies. The survey is available for any agency, business, organization, or institution now through Nov. 30, 2013

It's available online at:  https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/Tobacco-Free_Policy_CVHD.

Tobacco-free policies in the workplace address cigarette smoking by employees and/or visitors. These policies may address use of smokeless tobacco, electronic cigarettes, plus other tobacco products.  It will also address the issue of secondhand smoke exposure.

NOTE:  There is no real "safe level" of tobacco exposure and comprehensive policies can and should be put in place to support and help smokers to stop.  

Results from the survey will be used to help business and companies who are looking to implement a real and effective tobacco-free policy for the workers and the customer base.  Topics are going to include helping businesses provide employees and their dependents with access to free or reduced-cost cessation supports, make work environment completely tobacco-free, and ensure help compliance issues in regards to restrictions on the selling and promoting of tobacco products.

For Amy Trent's whole story from News Advance, click here! http://www.newsadvance.com/news/local/article_b4b38630-386e-11e3-900d-0019bb30f31a.html

For more information on the survey and policy for your company, contact Leslie Hoglund at (434) 944-5116 or leslie.hoglund@vdh.virginia.gov.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Lorillard Hedge Fund #2 Buys Sky e-cigs

Stop Smoking Greenbsboro - Lorillard Tobacco has closed on a deal to buy Skycig, a British e-cigarette
maker, for $49 million according to the Los Angeles Times.  The North Carolina-based tobacco giant has expanded more aggressively into the newest nicotine delivery trend than its larger rivals. Last year Lorillard paid $135 million to buy Blu eCigs.

“It has been Lorillard's mission to be first and best in the electronic cigarette category,” Chief Executive Murray Kessler said in a news release. “Our mission is now a global one.”

While from a pure business perspective, this makes total since.  Tower Records wasn't creative enough to solve their mp3 problem.  Big Tobacco has a viable hedge fund in the e-cigarette market.  Unfortunately, when you consider who is now in charge of manufacturing, advertising and marketing and stack that on the fact that Big Tobacco has functioned without any real ethics since the beginning, all that's really happened here is the music changed, but we're still dancing with the Devil.  

Monday, October 21, 2013

E-Cigarette in Arizona found to contain tar

Stop Smoking Tempe, AZ.  Mesa police arrested a Tempe man for using an electronic cigarette to smoke heroin.  Danika Worthington from the Arizona Republic discovered a court document showing how police found Mark Patrick Newman, aged 24, outside his home in Tempe.  Patrick was sitting in a BMW in the driveway.  Police said it appeared as if he had been smoking.  The cops found black tar heroin in Newman’s sock and an electronic cigarette with a melted black tar substance inside the center console, according to the court document.

The officers also discovered some pot and paraphernalia in the car.  Newman told police he smoked marijuana earlier in the afternoon and was smoking heroin when police arrived, the document says.

Newman was then arrested on multiple charges of possession of drugs and drug paraphernalia AND they hit him with the use of an electronic device in drug transactions.

This little incident occurred on July 2, right after Mesa police pulled Newman over for switching lanes without using his signal   Police found 30 bucks worth of black tar heroin in Newman’s sock. After a K9 smelled around a bit, they found drug paraphernalia used for smoking heroin..

BEST PART:  Newman told the police in July that he smoked three to four times a week but was not addicted to heroin.

CHIEF CONCERN:  The original article uses his full name, Mark Patrick Newman, which leads me to wonder if he will ultimately wind up being implicated in any local serial killings or assassination attempts.  Having a name like Mark Patrick Newman, should be probable cause.  Read this sentence like a news reporter:  "Multiple bodies were found buried in the back yard of a one Mark Patrick Newman."  Or they this one:  "The alleged gunman is one Mark Patrick Newman."  Feeling me on this one?  Either way, I hope Mr. Newmen gets the help he needs!  

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

E-Cigarette WARNING: This product contains chemicals known to the State of California to cause cancer and birth defects or other reproductive harm.

10 chemicals identified so far in e-cigarettes vapor that are on the California Prop 65 list of carcinogens and
reproductive toxins:

In the state of California exists Proposition 65.  It is the Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986.  It was enacted as a ballot initiative in November of 1986.  What the Proposition was designed to do was to protect Californians and their drinking water from chemicals already known to cause things like cancer, birth defects and other reproductive harm.  It was also set up to inform citizens when and where they may be exposed to these chemicals.

One of the requirements of Prop 65 is that the Governor is to publish, at least once a year, a list of chemicals known to the state to cause cancer or have reproductive "toxicity."

For products that contain these chemicals on the Prop 65 list, they are required to carry the following warning in California:

"WARNING: This product contains chemicals known to the State of California to cause cancer and birth defects or other reproductive harm."

So, guess what?  The compounds listed below are on the Prop 65 list AND have already been identified in mainstream or secondhand (sidestream) e-cigarette vapor:

Acetaldehyde (MS)
Benzene (SS)
Cadmium (MS)
Formaldehyde (MS,SS)
Isoprene (SS)
Lead (MS)
Nickel (MS)
Nicotine (MS, SS)
N-Nitrosonornicotine (MS, SS)
Toluene (MS, SS)

The take away is this, E-cigarettes do not deliver just "pure nicotine" and "harmless water vapor."  Just consider this.  In the first half of the 20th Century, cigarettes were smoked by doctors.  Tobacco as a product in cigars and pipes was used and people rolled their own cigarettes, but it wasn't until the late 19th and early 20th century that mass production of cigarettes made it incredibly easy to smoke and since no real long term effects had been seen or observed, people just assumed cigarettes were "OK."

You know the old saying, those who do not know their history are doomed to repeat it.  Look at the history of the cigarette and the roll advertising and marketing played in the explosion of death that followed and consider what's happening now in the highly unregulated world of electronic cigarettes.  Watch how many people are blinded by their addiction and then follow the money.  Big tobacco is in a relentless attempt to hedge themselves and they are following the exact same pattern that worked so incredibly well once.

Please good citizens of planet earth, don't fall for it a second time.  Fool me once, shame on you.  Fool me twice...  you know the rest!

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Top 5 Deathbed Regrets - Are any of these yours now?

What are the top five deathbed regrets?  Bronnie Ware wrote a book called "The Top Five Regrets of the Dying:  A Life Transformed by the Dearly Departing."  Bronnie worked as a pallitive nurse who noticed that people in transition had a lot in common.  From the book and multiple sources on line, allow me to share them with you.  While you're looking these five over and since this is a blog dedicated to helping people kick the habit, consider how these regrets play into your own life.  Is there a way you can leverage them into extending your time on this planet by not smoking anymore?  Can you use this to help yourself stop smoking and quite literally buy yourself the time you need to rid yourself of the possibility of these five regrets... 

1. I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.

“This was the most common regret of all. When people realize that their life is almost over and look back clearly on it, it is easy to see how many dreams have gone unfulfilled. Most people had not honored even a half of their dreams and had to die knowing that it was due to choices they had made, or not made. Health brings a freedom very few realize, until they no longer have it.”

2. I wish I hadn’t worked so hard.

“This came from every male patient that I nursed. They missed their children’s youth and their partner’s companionship. Women also spoke of this regret, but as most were from an older generation, many of the female patients had not been breadwinners. All of the men I nursed deeply regretted spending so much of their lives on the treadmill of a work existence.”

3. I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.

“Many people suppressed their feelings in order to keep peace with others. As a result, they settled for a mediocre existence and never became who they were truly capable of becoming. Many developed illnesses relating to the bitterness and resentment they carried as a result.”

4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.

“Often they would not truly realize the full benefits of old friends until their dying weeks and it was not always possible to track them down. Many had become so caught up in their own lives that they had let golden friendships slip by over the years. There were many deep regrets about not giving friendships the time and effort that they deserved. Everyone misses their friends when they are dying.”

5. I wish that I had let myself be happier.

”This is a surprisingly common one. Many did not realize until the end that happiness is a choice. They had stayed stuck in old patterns and habits. The so-called ‘comfort’ of familiarity overflowed into their emotions, as well as their physical lives. Fear of change had them pretending to others, and to their selves, that they were content, when deep within, they longed to laugh properly and have silliness in their life again.”

Challenge:  Are any of these your regrets now?  Right now?  If your time was up, on a scale from 1-10, where are you on the level of regret with each of these?

I'll wrap this up with a little Thoreau, "Most men lead lives of quite desperation and go to the grave with the song still in them."

Monday, October 7, 2013

Jack Wilshire in bed with Neo E-Cigarettes: Please don't get all Stephen Dorff on us!

Stop Smoking U.K. - Is soccer player Jack Wilshire about to hop into bed with Neo and Ballantyne Brands, LLC?

Neo is an electronic cigarette brand offering itself as a healthier alternative to traditional smoking.  Neo, however is taking a cue from Big Tobacco giants like Lorillard and going after celebrity endorsements.  Blu e-cigs has captured endorsements from Jenny McCarthy and Stephen Dorff.  Now, according to The Mirror, Neo, owned by Ballantyne Brands, LLC has made a substantial offer to Arsenal team member Jack Wilshire to "officially endorse the product as a healthy alternative to smoking."

The main reason for this substantial offer is Jack got caught puffing on a real one recently.  Football, which is Soccer in the states, is a big sport in the UK.  Professional Football players in England are as huge as American Football players and consequently they get paparatzied as hard as US celebrities.  Jack says he doesn't actually smoke and that the photo opp was all fun and games.  Who knows really, but I'm inclined to believe him.  It does seem crazy that any athlete, especially in this day and age would willfully give themselves such a major competitive disadvantage like smoking.

No wonder, Neo would swoop down on our boy Jack so quickly.  Almost shark like...  all I can say to old Jack here is:  Don't do it man!  I don't care how much money they offer you!  You're bigger then they are.  Don't get used by a "legitimate" drug dealer, pimp like Ballantyne.

E-cigarettes are nothing more than an evolution of the delivery device of a highly toxic and addictive chemical, nicotine.  Any company who willfully sells nicotine is in the addiction business and has blood on their hands.  Period.  Jeffrey Wigand's website offers a chilling question, "Is a cigarette a natural product?  Or one engineered for only one purpose: to deliver the addictive drug Nicotine?"  Consider this carefully Mr Wilshire as you are being watched.  Not just by the media, but by children who will make decisions about what is and is not cool.  You have a tremendous opportunity before you sir and I trust you will take the higher road!

Monday, September 30, 2013

CoxHealth New Hiring Policy Gets Tough On Smokers

The hospital chain out of Springfield, MO, CoxHealth will no longer hire people who use tobacco products.

CoxHealth announced at a news conference on Friday Sept 29th 2013, that it is adding nicotine screening to the tests that an applicant must pass in order to get hired.  CoxHealth leadership has said that the new policy is part of their overall mission to improve the health and wellness of their community.

Click here to see the press conference:  http://www.news-leader.com/videonetwork/2700327308001/CoxHealth-CEO-says-company-won-t-hire-smokers

The employees at CoxHealth all too often see first hand the effects of smoking.

Dr. Abe Abdalla, medical director of Hulston Cancer Center, "Simply put, smoking is the worst self-inflicted harm any human being can do to herself or himself.  Certainly as a cancer doctor, I see the devastating impact of smoking every day, not only on the patient, but also on their family."

So if you're want to work for CoxHealth you'll need to live and lead by example. Starting on November 21, all new hires will have to pass a nicotine screening.  If they don't pass, they don't get the job.  Period.  What's cool though is they will be offered admission into a stop smoking program, they can get no cost help to stop, and they will be invited to reapply in 90 days.

CoxHealth President and CEO Steve Edwards:  "We want employees who are healthy.  We think our employees must be role models to lead our community, to inspire our community to be a healthier place to work."

Smoking at Cox is already a challenge.  It is a smoke free campus for started and employees have to go at least 500 feet off the property to have a smoke.  AND they have to change clothes before coming back to work.  (Love that!)

"We think that if we're going to be leaders, we have to do things that not everyone likes, but we have to do what we believe is right, and so we intend to do that," Edwards said.

Cox is also offering an incentive for current employees to stop.  Edwards is creating a prize fund named after his father, Charlie, who was a smoker, but was also dedicated to healthcare.  Employees who quit could win $1,000 if they stay smoke-free for a year.

With that in mind, I'll make the following offer:  Any Cox employee or would be Cox employee can get my book "How To Stop Smoking Without Killing Anyone" for 50% off when ordered off this blog.  Send an email to puravidaetc@gmail.com for an invoice via PayPal.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Pete Turner's Story: Switch From Cigarettes to Jogging and How It Changed His Life

From Yahoo's Contributor Network out of the UK and Ireland comes the story of Pete Turner.  Read his inspiring story about how he used a little illness to turn his life around, introduced exercise and fitness into his lifestyle to kick the habit and accomplish something massive!

"I smoked for about a decade so I consider myself lucky that I got out when I did. Who knows how much harder it would have got if I'd waited longer?

Smoking was something I took up at around fifteen or sixteen. I was part of the generation who really should have known better. Unlike my parents' generation I had always known smoking was a stupid and unhealthy thing to do. Like many other teenagers however I had very few thoughts beyond what I was doing at the weekend in those days.

I started slowly, nicking fags off friends when I was socializing and then eventually fell into the routine of ten a day, maybe twenty on the weekends.

Then about four years ago, shortly before I turned 30, I got bronchitis. I couldn't move, couldn't breathe even without wheezing and spent months on antibiotics and puffing on an inhaler for the first time in my life. That summer I told myself I should quit and managed to not smoke through most of my illness. But cigarettes are sly and the odd one or two quickly became a full time habit again.

The following summer my bronchitis returned with a vengeance. Not only that, but when I was trying to clear my airways by breathing in menthol scented steam, I spilled boiling hot water all over my thighs, burning me so badly I still have the scars. I was at my lowest, lying in bed all summer with bandaged thighs and barely able to breathe and determined to quit the habit once and for all. I didn't want to just quit smoking either; I wanted to never be stuck in my bed due to ill health again.

I decided to eat better, exercise more and quit smoking as soon as I was recovered. I went through about three courses of antibiotics and finally felt better. I immediately took up jogging. Two years ago I could barely run a mile and struggled to get myself around the park near my house. Now I'm training for Paris Marathon 2014 and running my second Cardiff Half Marathon this October.

In quitting smoking and starting running at around the same time, I used jogging as a distraction from wanting a cigarette in the evenings. It worked and soon I found myself craving a jog, rather than a fag after work.
Annoying as it may sound to those who still smoke, now I find it very unpleasant to even be near smokers anymore. The smell has gone from comforting to disgusting and I don't think my lungs have ever fully recovered as passive smoking can often leave me in a coughing fit. I'm lucky to have quit right around the time smoking became illegal in pubs and clubs, saving me both from temptation and discomfort.

To smokers I say, don't let it get to the point I found myself at. Bronchitis is far from fun and lung cancer I imagine is a hell of a lot worse. Jogging can be a brilliant alternative and please believe me; you will eventually feel so much better for it."

If you want to, check out Pete's marathon training tips for advice on how to keep motivated when first starting jogging:  http://uk.lifestyle.yahoo.com/marathon-training-tips-motivation-134400795.html

I've been saying this the whole time, exercise has multiple benefits for anyone looking to kick the habit.  My book will also give you multiple options for reclaiming your lung capacity but the point here is look at the resilience of the human body and it's amazing ability to repair and rebuild itself.  So for now, Mr Gump can take a back seat and let's all give a shout out to Mr Turner and say, "RUN PETE RUN!"

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Who's a smoker and what's that gonna cost you?

Stop Smoking Detroit!  People in Detroit, MI have another solid reason to stop smoking.  This reason will have a national effect, but according to the  Detroit Free Press and the U.S. CDC, there are about 44 million people in the U.S. that smoke cigarettes.  In Michigan, that's about 1 in 5.

Recent health care reforms is allowing insurance companies  to adjust premiums for tobacco users upwards of 50% in some cases!

Tobacco use is the leading cause of preventable death and illness.  The CDC says that tobacco use costs the US approximately $96 billion annually in medical costs and $97 billion in lost productivity.

SIDE BAR:  Add those two up and we're talking about $193 billion dollars a year.  If you could redirect these funds, how would you spend that money?  The national debt could be paid down in about 85 years assuming we accrue no additional debt...  like that'll ever happen.  

Smoking is the only behavior or habit that an insurer can actually penalize a consumer for doing under the federal law.

The questions now is, what makes a smoker a smoker in the eyes of Uncle Sam?

Here at The StopDontQuit blog, we wanted smokers and occasional smokers alike to know so they can make a educated decision on specifically how and when they decide to continue smoking.


  • If you've used tobacco an average of four or more times per week within the last six months, your considered a tobacco user.
  • Since a minor cannot purchase tobacco products legally, an insurance company cannot take tobacco use into account to set premiums if the tobacco user is younger than 18.
  • An insurance company can't penalize smokers or tobacco users for using it for religious or ceremonial uses.”  It uses Native American ceremonies as an example, but it does not clarify this provision further.
  • Good news is that the law requires that all individual and small-market policies cover tobacco cessation programs.

Here's another fun fact.  Let's say you lied about your smoking, then get caught.  Caught meaning a tumor in your lung or throat cancer that can't be explained away in any Michael Douglas fashion.  Now what?  Well the insurance company can't drop your lying ass, but they can charge you what you should have paid and do retroactively.

If you're a number guy, consider this.  The law also allows an adult smoker to be be charged three times more than a young adult smoker.  And it also provides that smokers don't get to use government tax credits available to help pay premiums to offset the surcharges from smoking...  [insert Homer Simpson DOH! here]

So do that math.  What does it really cost you to keep smoking?  Would you invest $20 to learn how to stop?  Clearly you need to learn how to stop.  You haven't quit yet, obviously, because you're still smoking. What if you didn't have to quit, but all you needed to do was stop? Every time you get on a plane, you stop.  Every time you go to the movies, you stop.  Why not stop all together?  Who said anything about quitting?  I stopped in 2002, haven't had a cigarette since and still haven't quit.  And look, if I can do that, certainly you can too.  Listen to yourself and the excuses you're making up right now.  Hopefully you feel like that really isn't you talking and would like to let the real you back out to play.  Pick up a copy of "How To Stop Smoking Without Killing Anyone", invest $20 in saving the rest of your life.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Gene Therapy and Hedge Funds For Smokers

In a recent article from Tele Management, scientist are working with genes to see if they can determine which smokers may or may not get ling cancer.  I'm pasting the article below and will peanut gallery it as I go through it like the two old men on the muppets....  enjoy!

Predicting Which Smokers Will Get Lung Cancer [who want's to know, addicts?]

Cigarette smoke is the leading cause of lung cancer in the United States, accounting for approximately 90 percent of all lung cancer cases. [holy crap!]  Unfortunately, at this time, there is no reliable test for predicting which smokers are at highest risk for developing lung cancer. It is also difficult to detect lung cancer at an early stage, when treatment might be more effective.  [So, who would smoke anyway if they knew they could without getting lung cancer?  What about emphysema?  Esophageal cancer? Prostate cancer?]

Now, according to a study published journal Science Translational Medicine, [Translational Medicine sounds made up to me, how about you?] a team of researchers from around the United States has identified a gene pathway that is activated in the airways of people with lung cancer. Cigarette smoke causes injury to the entire respiratory tract and not just the lung. So, these researchers collected normal tissue from the airways of smokers both with and without lung cancer to study early smoking-induced damage. They found that activity of a gene pathway called phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K) is significantly increased only in the airway cells of smokers with lung cancer. In addition, the scientists were able to demonstrate that PI3K activation in the airways was associated only with lung cancer, and not with lifetime smoke exposure, smoking status, or presence of other smoking-related lung diseases. [So there ARE other smoking related diseases!  That's good to know...]

Lung cancer develops deep in the lungs, but based on the findings of this study, PI3K activation is present even in normal airway cells of smokers with lung cancer. This means that physicians might be able to identify smokers who are at risk for, or already have, lung cancer using a procedure called bronchoscopy to collect cells from their windpipes rather than having to perform more invasive lung tests. It also means that smokers with lung cancer might be diagnosed and treated at an earlier stage of the disease with better outcomes.

[BOTTOM LINE:  Smoking is a deadly activity.  If it's not lung cancer, it will be something else.  How many times has looking for a short cut taken twice as long or been twice as hard then if you just did the thing you were trying to avoid.  I wonder how many of these translational doctors smoke.  There's no safe way to smoke and there's no way around the fact that you're not the 90 year old Russian lady who's been smoking since she was 12 and can still lift a small cow over her head.  There's a word for people like that...  mutants!  You are not Wolverine.  Smoking will lead to your premature death.  So, if you like committing a passive aggressive for of suicide, keep at it.  If on the other hand you're ready to shed the shackles of Big Tobacco and reclaim your health and freedom, pick up a copy of my book, How To Stop Smoking Without Killing Anyone.  Take back your self control, your health and response-ability]

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Coxhealth Helping Pregnant Women and Parents Stop Smoking

Stop Smoking SPRINGFIELD, Mo.  Congratulations goes out to CoxHealth who will be the host of a no cost Freedom From Smoking course starting on Sept. 26.  The curse is for pregnant women and their significant others who smoke.

CoxHealth is urging women who smoke or who are around second-hand smoke to participate in the this free event.  Cox has partnered up with the American Lung Association on this one.

Denise Vaughan who is a nurse educator for the CoxHealth Women's Center says that, “The dangers of cigarette smoke to an unborn child are well-documented.  We also know that many women return to smoking as soon as they deliver and we want to do everything we can to help mothers and their significant others quit smoking for good."

Good job Denise!

Research will show that smoking can double the risk of placenta problems, both of which can put mother and child in grave danger.  Cigarette smoke can also slow a child’s growth, which increases the likelihood that the baby will be born under weight, with an increase in the chances of a premature birth, and the odds of SIDS goes up by two.

Denise also points out that, "There is no question that quitting smoking is best for baby. But it’s important to remember that it’s best for a family’s long-term health, too.”

So, if you're in the Springfield are and want to attend, here are the details of the class:

When:  The Freedom From Smoking course will be offered as a seven-week session beginning on Thursday, Sept. 26 from 6-7 p.m.

Where:  Classes will be held in room 006 at Olin Library on the Drury University campus, 900 N. Benton Ave., Springfield, Mo.

Parking:  Participants may park along Drury Lane and Burnham Circle, and in lots #1 and #2 at the corner of Durry Lane and Centeral St.

Registration is required for this program, which is made possible by a grant from the Missouri Foundation for Health.

To register, or for more information, call 417-269-LADY.

BONUS OFFERING:  Anyone who attends this event, email me a copy of your registration and I will send you an autographed copy of my book, "How To Stop Smoking Without Killing Anyone" at 50% off.  You will be able to use this book to support what you learned and reinforce your resolve to stop smoking for your child and your family.  My email:  puravidaetc@gmail.com