It’s never too late to stop smoking, not even when you’re pushing 60, according to a study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine shows. Apparently, long-time smokers still have a chance of lowering their risk of premature death if they quit immediately.
The research revolves around a review of 17 studies with the number of participants ranging from 863 to 877,243 for follow-up periods of three to 50 years. Summarizing the findings, researchers found that smokers past the age of 60 were 83 percent more likely to die than those who never smoked. Meanwhile, former smokers over the age of 60 were 34 percent more likely to die than those who never smoked. Looking at the figures closely, you’ll see that there is a 28 percent difference in smoking mortality between those who kept on smoking and those who made the decision to quit.
An editorial published in the same journal offers more insight. According to Dr. Tai Hing Lam of the University of Hong Kong, the earlier you quit, the more you decrease your risk of dying too soon. For those in their 60s, quitting smoking reduced the risk by 21 percent, for those in their 70s by 27 percent, and for those in their 80s by 24 percent.
Based on these results, it appears that it's not too late to quit the habit. After all, if you can lower your chance of dying by even 10 percent, wouldn’t you want to take that opportunity?
(Photo by Jon Jordan via Flickr Creative Commons)