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Obesity Vs. Smoking For you fools out there...

#1 User is offline   bobzero11 Icon

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Posted 30 June 2005 - 03:26 PM

I got this from an interesting resource online... Dr. Mercola... seems to be out to sell more than inform, but still has some interesting stuff on the site... check it out

Mercola Homepage

Obesity vs. Smoking
Which is Worse for You ... Obesity or Smoking?



It has previously been stated by a Centers for Disease Control (CDC) spokesperson that, "A nation with an expanding waistline is in far better shape than one with a cigarette in its mouth."

And while smoking is certainly dangerous to one's health, when it comes to choosing the less harmful of two evils: Obesity does appear to be worse when it comes to accelerating the aging process and decreasing the time that you will remain on this planet.

Study of Telomeres

Researchers compared the length of telomeres -- the ends of chromosomes -- in the white blood cells of some 1,100 women ages 18-76. When a cell divides, its telomere loses a small piece of DNA; when it becomes too short, cells can no longer divide. Thus, telomere shortening acts as a sign of aging, counting down the cellular generations.

After calculating the amount of telomere shortening in the women, researchers compared the chromosomes based on lifestyle factors such as smoking habits and obesity. The results showed:

* Obese women were almost nine years older, genetically, than their counterparts.
* Those who smoked aged about half as slowly (4.6 years) as obese patients.
* Both obesity and smoking worked synergistically to age a patient even faster -- by at least a decade -- than a lean non-smoker.

What's more, the effects are set in stone. In other words, while losing weight and quitting smoking reduce the rate of telomere loss, it cannot restore them.

Role of Free Radicals

Researchers speculate telomere damage is probably done by free radicals. That's because both smoking and obesity cause oxidative stress, a source of free radicals. Free radicals play a role in DNA mutations, and there is some evidence that mutations in telomeres cause larger chunks than normal to be lost during cell division.

Further, animal studies have not established any simple relationship between telomere length and lifespan; therefore, it's possible that shortened telomeres are merely a sign of how much free radical damage cells have suffered, rather than a direct cause of aging.
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#2 User is offline   Alcatraz Icon

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Posted 30 June 2005 - 07:21 PM

Guess it will suck if someone's obese and a smoker. Especially if that person is a heavy smoker.
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#3 User is offline   Chadforpresidentin08 Icon

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Posted 30 June 2005 - 09:15 PM

Thanks for the update Tiger, and smoking can cause obesity too, so smoking is somewhat (in my mind) riskier, but that's not including all the DNA breaking away from the telomere or whatever.
BUT, keep this in mind, obesity are results from eating habits as kids and early teens, since those habits will be brought to the future as will the fat. That's why more fatter people are appearing, since there has been less disicpline lain out by parents on their kids on what they ate and that there are more of those foods around.
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#4 User is offline   bobzero11 Icon

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Posted 01 July 2005 - 12:21 AM

how can smoking cause obesity? most people who smoke tend to be skinnier... it fills their "oral vice"... this is why a lot of people are fat or smoke (according to certain psychologists such as freud) they may have had trouble as a child while in their oral stage of development and therefore need to gratify their oral fixation later in life either through eating or smoking or both (or various other things...)
nerves also factor in... but i digress

i know you are young kemosabe.... but just because you may know one fat chick that smokes too, you shouldnt make that association... but live and learn man, live and learn...
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#5 User is offline   Chadforpresidentin08 Icon

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Posted 01 July 2005 - 07:46 AM

Well my Mom (who also has profession in the medical fields like you), told me about it all, and then on all those health alerts and stuff they say that.
But she said it causes you to eat more, it either had something to do with DNA or blah or the drugs affect on the brain, that's what she told me and those news alerts and stuff, and I did just take D.A.R.E. this year and they do say smoking is a cause of obesity (then again D.A.R.E, standing for Dug Abuse Resistance Education, says that one sip of alcahol can kill you, when in reality if you have a little every once in awhile it's healthy for your heart).
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