‘Yes I can’: kicking the habit helps pave the way towards a cancer free world

Breaking the habit isn’t as easy as it looks. (MCT Campus)
Breaking the habit isn’t as easy as it looks. (MCT Campus)

Did you know that tobacco use is the single largest preventable cause of disease and premature death in the US? Are you aware that each year smoking accounts for 443,000 premature deaths and 49,400 non-smokers die as a result of exposure to secondhand smoke?

It turns out that more than 70 percent of adult smokers say they want to quit, but without help, fewer than 5 percent succeed. Nearly everyone in your community has likely been touched by cancer in some way whether personally or through the experience of a family member, friend, or coworker. But everyone in your community also has the power to help prevent cancer.

According to the American Cancer Society nearly half of all cancer deaths could be prevented if people did what we know works: eat right, exercise, avoid tobacco, and get regular check-ups.

For those of you who are unaware, the month of November plays host to the Great American Smoke Out (GASO). This November, The American Cancer Society is marking its 36th Great American Smoke out on November 17th.

On this day the American Cancer Society along with Bryant’s Colleges Against Cancer will be encouraging smokers to use the date to make a plan to quit, or to plan in advance and quit smoking on that day. Ultimately the goal of doing so will be to help smokers take that important step towards a healthier life and reduced cancer risk.

At any point you can make a change so why not use GASO as your starting point. Tobacco use remains the single largest preventable cause of disease and premature death in the US, yet more than 46 million Americans still smoke. However, according to the American Cancer Society, more than half of these smokers have attempted to quit for at least one day in the past year.

The reality is that quitting smoking is hard, but you can increase your chances of success with help. The American Cancer Society website is a great resource that you can use to learn about the steps you can take to quit smoking. If you are not a smoker you can also learn about the resources and support that can increase your chances of helping a loved one or friend quit successfully.

Look for Colleges Against Cancer in the Roto all next week. Stop by the table to see what kind of activities and information you can do or learn about. Check next week’s edition to see pictures and to get a recap of GASO.

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