World No Tobacco Day !
Every year, May 31st, the World Health Organisation (WHO) celebrates the World No Tobacco Day. The idea is to highlight the dangerous health risks that tobacco produces and to advocate for real effective policies that reduce its consumption.
Did you know that an average of six million people die every single year because of tobacco? And worse enough: more than 600,000 of these are non-smokers! How is this possible? The reason is that they breathe the smoke that others exhale.
Cigarettes (the most common way tobacco is consumed) has, apart from tobacco, at least 600 ingredients that when burned create more than 7000 chemicals. 69 of those create cancer, the rest are poisonous. Smokers and lots of non-smokers lungs and veins are full of acetone (use for nail polish remover), carbon monoxide (released in car exhaust fumes), methanol (a main component of rocket fuel!) and nicotine (used as insecticide). These are just four examples. There are many more.
The 2015 World No Tobacco Day is dedicated to denouncing illegal tobacco. One in every ten cigarettes is illegal and this implies not only a health problem, but an economical one that originates corruption affairs. The tobacco industry and criminal groups are leaving the public to pay the health and security costs. Governments should ratify the Protocol to Eliminate Illicit Trade in Tobacco Products in order to respond to the financial, legal and health impacts of the illicit trade of tobacco products. The public, academia and other sectors can take action by urging their lawmakers to make their countries adhere to the Protocol.
All in all, society is much more concerned about the mortal health problems that tobacco consumption creates than two decades ago. Keep this idea in mind and think about it: smokers die, more or less, five years before the non-smokers.
Consume life, not tobacco!
By David Pulido Suarez
Student at CET Services