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Charity urges Newham smokers to quit the habit

17:22 19 February 2014

The British Heart Foundation is calling on Newham smokers to quit the habit this year and do smoething to improve their health

The British Heart Foundation is calling on Newham smokers to quit the habit this year and do smoething to improve their health

PA Wire/Press Association Images

A heart charity is urging Newham’s smokers to get the support of local stop smoking services to help them quit on No Smoking Day on March 12.

The latest figures show that 20 per cent of adults, that is 65,193, in Newham smoke. This is the same as the national average. Half of all long-term smokers die because of their addiction to tobacco, making this one of the most pressing health concerns in the area, according to the British Heart Foundation.

Research from stop smoking services shows that smokers are four times more likely to be effective in quitting if they use specialist stop smoking support and treatment.

Dr Mike Knapton, Associate Medical Director at the British Heart Foundation said: “Quitting smoking is the single best thing you can do to improve your health. Stubbing the cigarettes out will significantly reduce your risk of heart disease, stroke and a variety of cancers and you’ll have more money to spend on things that you enjoy.

“We know that quitting isn’t easy but last year nearly a million smokers used No Smoking Day to try and mark the start of their smoke free future. We’re encouraging people to get support from their local stop smoking service now and join forces with other would-be quitters across the UK on March 12, to win the battle with cigarettes once and for all.”

Although two-thirds of smokers want to give up, BHF research shows that more than one in four, 28 per cent, in the region are putting it off because they are concerned about putting on weight. The poll of 2000 smokers also revealed that more than one in five, 23 per cent in the region have lit up after a meal to stop them eating more.

More than 100,000 smokers in the UK die from smoking related causes each year, including around 22,000 from heart and circulatory diseases and 45,000 from cancer.

The British Heart Foundation’s annual No Smoking Day campaign encouraged a million people to attempt to quit smoking last year. This year’s ‘V for Victory’ theme is set to inspire even more people to win the fight against cigarettes and quit for good.

BHF dietitian, Victoria Taylor shares her tips to help you to minimise weight gain during the quitting process and keep the weight off once you’ve given up for good:

· Brush your teeth or try chewing some sugar free gum when you get a craving for a cigarette. The clean feeling in your mouth and minty taste can help to deter you from smoking and it can also help to curb cravings or urges to eat too.

· Keeping your hands busy can be important when you are trying to give up. Avoid the temptation to keep nibbling and try playing a word or number game on your phone, doing some cleaning around the house or fiddly tasks that we often put off, like sewing.

· Set aside 30 minutes five times a week for getting active. It can help you to manage stress and will also use up some energy which is perfect for helping you to stick with your quit as well as manage your weight.

For more top tips, information and support on quitting, visit: nosmokingday.org.uk

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