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November 20th is the Great American Smokeout

Let’s finally kick the habit! Every November on the third Thursday, it is the day known across the nation as the day to officially give up smoking! Yes, most of us thought it was January 1st, but no, this day existed long before the common resolution day (let’s face it, it’s far more effective too).

The goal of the Great American Smokeout Day is obvious: to get people to quit smoking, resulting in fewer health problems, and less cancer and emphysema deaths resulting from smoking and secondary smoke. We all know that quitting smoking is not an easy task,
because it’s generally harder to stop than to start! But we must prevail! If not for ourselves, and if not for the people around us, what about for our children? Everybody has that mother, father, grandparent, or that weird cousin Kevin nobody talks to when he came to Thanksgiving dinner because he smoked like a train. We all wish they would just give it up just to stop being so obnoxious and gravelly-voiced. Well what about the day they aren’t there anymore? We never know what may be the last time we talk to someone already. Why should you or anyone do anything to hurry up that permanent farewell?

This holiday was started back in 1977 by the American Cancer Society to promote awareness that smoking is not only one of the deadliest habits, but one of the most destructive to innocent bystanders. An estimated 88 million nonsmokers in the United Stated were exposed to secondhand smoke in 2007-2008, and today, about half of the children between ages 3 and 18 in the U.S. are exposed to cigarette smoke regularly, either at home or in places such as restaurants that still allow smoking, see CDC

The Health benefits alone are worth the effort to change your life. Just 12 hours after quitting, your carbon monoxide levels in your blood will be cut in half! Only 1 year after quitting the likelihood of heart disease also gets cut in half! You are now twice as likely NOT to die from heart disease as you were only a year ago. The American Cancer Society encourages all smokers to give up the “butt” today. Join millions of other Americans today and take a big step to a happier, healthier, longer life.

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