|« Importance of ABO and Secretor Status in Metabolic Syndrome||'Atypical' Coeliac Disease »|
Are there diet options that will assist in quit smoking? Most difficult hurdle to quit. Am 53 years of age and have smoked since 9 years of age. Tried every marketed product. What's the crazy 'noose' that holds this habit inside my life so strongly? Better, what is the solution to ridding of this nasty and lethal habit? Thanks for your advice.
The World Health Organization estimates that tobacco kills around 4.9 million people a year, and that this will rise to 10 million by 2030 (1).
Smoking predisposes and contributes to cell-damaging changes throughout the body. Smokers have a greater incidence of coronary heart disease, myocardial infarction, peripheral vascular disease and reduced healing rates. People with diabetes and women who use oral contraceptives are at higher risk of circulatory problems, and respiratory disease is higher among smokers. Smoking increases the risk and severity of oral cancer, periodontal disease, and premalignancy in the oral cavity (see previous article on smoking).
A study on how dentists can play a part in helping their patients to give up smoking using a point of care test for measuring salivary nicotine metabolites (2) improved smoking quit rates by 17% at eight weeks.
A saliva test carried out during the visit to the dentist gave patients a visual scale of the level of toxic substances in the blood. Patients were given verbal counselling on smoking cessation, information about the effects of smoking on oral health (including photographs of smoking related disease), and literature packs. They were then asked to attend the dental clinic eight weeks later, with the objective of smoking cessation as measured by self report and confirmed by a salivary nicotine metabolite value of zero.
At eight weeks the saliva test showed that quit rates had improved significantly, with 23% of cases quitting compared with 6% of controls (based on the number of patients who attended the follow-up).
The authors recommend: "The identification, documentation, screening, and treatment of every tobacco user should become standard practice in all healthcare environments."
It appears that personalised feedback on exposure to tobacco derived toxins can improve motivation to quit smoking. Immediate and personalised biofeedback from the test reinforced counselling and placed potential quitters in a more supportive environment.
You may wish to consult your dentist on stopping smoking, however your naturopath may be able to offer further assistance:
In natural medicine the herb Lobelia inflata has been used to help people stop smoking. An active ingredient in the lobelia plant, lobeline, is similar to nicotine in its effect on the body. Like nicotine, it stimulates nerves in the central nervous system. In fact, lobeline has been used as a nicotine substitute in many anti-smoking products and preparations designed to break the smoking habit. In 1993, however, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) prohibited the sale of lobeline-containing smoking products because, according to the FDA report, they lacked effectiveness in helping people quit or reduce smoking.
It is important to note that lobelia is a potentially toxic herb. Lobelia can be safely used in very small doses (particularly homeopathic doses), but moderate to large doses can cause serious adverse effects ranging from dry mouth and nausea to convulsions and even coma. Under the guidance of a qualified healthcare practitioner, however, lobelia, in combination with other herbs that affect the respiratory system, is considered relatively safe.
In homoeopathy there are various other remedies that may be used to help individuals stop smoking, including Caladium Seguinum, Natrum Carbonicum and Sepia, depending on the clinical picture.
(1) World Health Organization. Annual report from WHO's tobacco free initiative. Geneva: WHO, 1999.
(2) Effect of incorporating a 10 minute point of care test for salivary nicotine metabolites into a general practice based smoking cessation programme: randomised controlled trial.
Barnfather KD, Cope GF, Chapple IL.
BMJ. 2005 Oct 29;331(7523):999.
Comments are not allowed from anonymous visitors.