Blog | Monday, February 23, 2009

Medical news of the obvious

Our focus this week is on smoking. A new study in BMJ finds that smoking is bad for you, even if you're rich! As reported by HealthDay, the authors conclude that "in essence, neither affluence nor being female offers a defense against the toxicity of tobacco." So much for the magical properties of our solid gold cigarette holder.

In other bad-but-perhaps-already-known news for women, a group of public health investigators have determined that tobacco companies are trying to make cigarettes appealing. To quote HealthDay again, cigarette ads "depict cigarette smoking as feminine and fashionable rather than the harmful and deadly addiction it really is."

And while we're on the subject, we've got to mention this study, even though its conclusions are far from obvious. A signficant proportion of surveyed smokers said that while the effects of smoking on their own health are not sufficient motivation to quit, they would stop smoking if they knew their pets were being harmed by the habit. Really, people? Really?