Category Archives: News

U.S. Will Ban Smoking in Public Housing Nationwide

01smoking-master768Smoking will be prohibited in public housing residences nationwide under a federal rule announced on Wednesday.

Officials with the Department of Housing and Urban Development said that the rule would take effect early next year, but that public housing agencies would have a year and a half to put smoke-free policies in place. The rule will affect more than 1.2 million households, the officials said, although some 200,000 homes already come under smoking bans adopted voluntarily by hundreds of public housing agencies around the country.

The nationwide ban will have its greatest impact in New York, where the New York City Housing Authority — whose 178,000 apartments and more than 400,000 residents make it the largest public housing agency in the United States, has lagged behind many of its counterparts in adopting smoke-free policies. While HUD proposed the sweeping prohibition a year ago, it had been prodding public housing authorities to adopt such policies since 2009.

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Smoking Permanently Damages Your DNA, Study Finds

160609-cigarette-smoke-358p_fc2c2aa720ba62180d2791cdd8038bb9-nbcnews-ux-2880-1000Smoking scars DNA in clear patterns, researchers reported Tuesday. Most of the damage fades over time, they found — but not all of it. Their study of 16,000 people found that while most of the disease-causing genetic footprints left by smoking fade after five years if people quit, some appear to stay there forever. Image: A customer smokes a cigarette in a cafe A customer smokes a cigarette in a cafe in Prague, Czech Republic, May 25, 2016. DAVID W CERNY / Reuters, file The marks are made in a process called methylation, which is an alteration of DNA that can inactivate a gene or change how it functions -- often causing cancer and other diseases. "Our study has found compelling evidence that smoking has a long-lasting impact on our molecular machinery, an impact that can last more than 30 years," said Roby Joehanes of Hebrew SeniorLife and Harvard Medical School. Heart disease and cancer are both caused by genetic damage -- some of it inherited, but most of it caused by day-to-day living. Smoking is one of the biggest culprits. "The encouraging news is that once you stop smoking, the majority of DNA methylation signals return to never-smoker levels after five years, which means your body is trying to heal itself of the harmful impacts of tobacco smoking," Joehanes said. Read more......
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FDA sued over delay on graphic cigarette warning labels

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is being sued over its delay in issuing a final rule about graphic health warnings on cigarette packs and ads.

The legal action was launched by eight public health and medical groups -- including the American Cancer Society -- and several individual pediatricians. They filed suit Oct. 4 in federal court in Boston. Besides the cancer society, the organizations involved in the lawsuit are: the American Academy of Pediatrics, the Massachusetts Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network, the American Heart Association, the American Lung Association, the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, and Truth Initiative. Under a 2009 federal law, the FDA was given until June 22, 2011 to issue a final rule on graphic cigarette warnings covering the top half of the front and back of cigarette packs, and 20 percent of cigarette advertising. The FDA met the deadline but the specific warnings required by the agency were struck down in August 2012 by an appeals court. However, the ruling applied only to certain images proposed by the FDA and did not affect the underlying requirement of the 2009 law. Read more......
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CDC: Adult smoking rate in Arizona drops to historic low

7855651_gThe adult smoking rate in Arizona has dropped to an all-time low, with more than 200,000 Arizonans kicking the habit in the last five years. New data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows that the adult smoking rate in Arizona has dropped to a historic low of 14 percent. The new 2015 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System report shows the percentage of Arizona adults who smoke has dropped from 19.3 percent in 2011. This decrease translates to more than 200,000 Arizonans who quit smoking, just over the last five years. Smoking is a leading cause of death in the United States and Arizona, which is why helping people quit smoking is a top priority of the Arizona Department of Health Services. “I am excited to see this significant decrease in the number of people smoking in our state,” said Dr. Cara Christ, director of the Arizona Department of Health Services. “As we all know, smoking causes several negative health effects such as heart disease, cancer, respiratory disease, and stroke.” The impact this drop has on our state reaches far beyond the 200,000 people who made the positive choice to quit smoking, according to Dr. Christ. “Secondhand smoke is also harmful to family members who don’t smoke, especially children,” said Dr. Christ. “The more people who make the choice to quit, the more lives will be improved in Arizona. As the saying goes, when you quit tobacco, you put more years in your life and more life in your...
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