Why is smoking harmful?
Cigarette smoke contains thousands of chemicals. Some of these can damage your blood vessels and heart. Smoking doubles your risk of heart attack and stroke, and recent research shows that smoking just one cigarette a day increases your risk.
Does smoking cause high cholesterol?
- Smoking makes your LDL cholesterol (bad type) more “sticky” – so it sticks to your arterial walls and clogs them.
- Smoking lowers HDL cholesterol (a good type), which usually removes cholesterol from the walls of blood vessels.
- Smoking damages the walls of your arteries and cholesterol accumulates in damaged areas.
These changes mean that your arteries become clogged faster. Smoking also increases your heart rate, narrows your blood vessels and thickens your blood, and reduces its ability to carry oxygen. Blood does not flow easily around your body, your heart has to work harder, and blood clots can form, which can lead to heart attacks and strokes.
How will giving up help?
As soon as you stop smoking, your risk of heart disease and many other health problems begins to decrease. You will feel very cheerful and healthy, your skin will improve, your stress levels will drop, your breathing will be easier, and walking and training will be easier.
- For hours, heart rate will return to normal and chemicals will begin to leave your blood.
- During the days, your breath will be opened, your taste and smell will improve.
- During the week, your blood will become less sticky and the risk of heart attack will begin to decrease.
- For months, blood flow around your body will improve, you will feel more energetic and exercise will be easier.
- Within a year, your cough and wheezing will improve because your lungs can take in more air.
- A year later, your risk of heart disease and heart attack will be halved. After 15 years, he will look like a man who has never smoked.