Monday, April 15, 2024

Amazing changes begin within minutes.. What happens to the body after quitting smoking?


Quitting smoking is a difficult but important step toward improving overall health and reducing the risk of serious illness.

If you smoke cigarettes and want to quit this harmful habit, this decision will be an important step in achieving significant positive changes in your body.

If you decide to stop inhaling harmful smoke and stay away from more than 4,800 toxic substances in cigarettes, amazing and tangible changes will occur in the body and you will see health changes that you have never felt before.

What happens to the body when you stop smoking?

After 20 minutes

The “healthy” website confirms that 20 minutes after consuming the last cigarette, blood circulation in the arms and legs begins to improve, made difficult by the narrowing of vessels and arteries by toxins.

According to Lynn Horowitz, a pulmonologist at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York, smoking directly affects blood flow throughout the body.

Two hours later

Horowitz notes that after two hours of not smoking, the body’s pulse and heart rate will improve and blood pressure will stabilize.

For the pregnant woman, the fetal heart rate will begin to return to normal.

12 hours later

According to the World Health Organization, about 12 hours after quitting smoking, the level of carbon monoxide in the blood returns to normal, and the level of oxygen in the blood begins to improve.

As for carbon monoxide, it is a colorless and odorless toxic gas found in large amounts in cigarette smoke, which is absorbed by the body to replace oxygen.

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24 hours later

Lynn Horowitz says: Heart attack risk begins to decrease after 24 hours due to regularization of heart rate, blood pressure, and percentage of oxygen in the body.

After two days

After 48 hours of not smoking, the smoker’s senses of smell and taste improve. Chemicals added to tobacco greatly affect the nerves associated with the senses of smell and taste.

It takes some time for the body to regain full sensitivity to smells and tastes, but the ability to sense them gradually improves after two days.

After three days

Horowitz explains that lung function begins to improve and the ex-smoker feels his breathing is better.

At this stage, tiny hairs in the lungs called cilia heal.

Three weeks later

At this point, the body may have completely eliminated traces of nicotine from the body.

Nicotine is stored in fat cells, so depending on factors such as weight and smoking, it may take longer to get rid of it.

Three months later

3 months after ex-smokers quit smoking, their skin started to improve, especially in terms of color.

The chemicals in cigarettes can discolor the skin and lead to brown or gray patches, especially around the lips and fingers.

Smoking constricts blood vessels and reduces blood flow to the skin. As a result, there may be a decrease in the supply of oxygen and nutrients to the skin.

A year later

According to the World Health Organization, the risk of developing cardiovascular diseases is cut in half after 12 months of quitting smoking.

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“Smoking is the number one cause of heart disease,” says Horowitz on The Healthy website.

5 years later

Over 5 years, the risk of stomach, mouth, throat, esophagus and lung cancer decreases.

In addition, the World Health Organization indicates that the risk of stroke is significantly reduced.

10 years later

As a result of the body repairing lung cells damaged by smoking, the risk of developing lung cancer continues to decrease by 50% 10 years after quitting smoking.

Horowitz explains that the risk of cancers of the mouth, throat, esophagus, bladder and kidney also continues to decrease.

15 years later

The World Health Organization notes that the rate of heart disease in ex-smokers becomes the rate of non-smokers after 15 years.

It is important to note that smoking is associated with premature death and reduced life expectancy, so quitting the habit increases your chances of living longer and in better health.

Diet helps to stop smoking

On the other hand, quitting smoking requires strong will and serious commitment from the smoker, and there are contributing factors including regular exercise and a healthy diet.

In this regard, nutritionist Basheer Al-Badr in a previous interview with “Al-Arabi” talked about the importance of following a certain diet when quitting smoking, because nicotine accelerates metabolism, that is, the conversion of food into energy.

Therefore, to avoid weight gain and health effects after quitting smoking, an ex-smoker should switch to a healthy metabolism-boosting agent.

Al-Badr advised ex-smokers to avoid hunger pangs, split meals throughout the day and focus on eating fruits and vegetables, as they contain vitamins and nutrients that are great for boosting immunity. Consuming a good amount of protein helps you feel full longer.

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Nadia Barnett
Nadia Barnett
"Award-winning beer geek. Extreme coffeeaholic. Introvert. Avid travel specialist. Hipster-friendly communicator."

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