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1. Study finds smoking “epidemic” likely to kill two out of three Australian smokers.
Two out of three smokers, or about 1.8 million Australians, will die because of their habit, the first large-scale Australian study on the link between smoking and mortality shows.
The study, published in the international journal BMC Medicine, found the smoking “epidemic” reduced a smoker’s life expectancy by 10 years on average.
Scientists from the Sax Institute in Sydney and the University of Melbourne followed 200,000 smokers over the age of 45.
Professor Emily Banks, the lead author of the study, said smoking was a “very, very powerful addiction” and she hoped the findings would give people the information they needed to really consider whether they should continue to smoke.
“Even though we’ve been incredibly successful at tobacco control in Australia we still have 2.7 million smokers,” Professor Banks said.
“And 1.8 million of those smokers will die from their habit if they don’t quit.”
The three main conditions that kill smokers are cardiovascular disease, cancer and chronic lung disease.
Professor Banks said those who smoked 10 cigarettes a day doubled their risk of premature death and that figure was much higher for heavy smokers.
The study found those who gave up the habit before the age of 45 could mostly avoid the major risks associated with smoking.
This story was originally published by the ABC, and was republished here with full permission.