What Smoking Do To Your Muscles
We all know that cigarette smoking increases the
risks of many diseases such as lung cancer, heart diseases, high blood
pressure, stroke and so on and so forth. Do you know that smoking also can
severely damage your muscles and inhibit your quest of building a muscular
body? This are the findings of researchers at the Nottingham University (NU),
In a study of smokers in their sixties, the NU
researchers discovered that the subject of their studies have about 25% less
muscle than the non-smoker. The smokers also continue to suffer break down of
muscle proteins at a much higher rate than non-smokers. Another bad news for
Although the study subjects are elderly people,
the lead researcher Professor Michael Rennie said he would be surprised if
this phenomenon is not common in younger smokers too.
Professor Rennie warned young, gym workout lovers
who think they can carry on smoking because they are active that this health
bashing habit severely decreases muscle-forming processes. So if you want to build
a lean and muscular body, you should quit
The good Professor said: "This is an entirely new
finding of another damaging side effect to the body caused by cigarette
smoking which was not ascertained before. Although the study concentrates on
the effects of smoking has on muscles in older people, I would eat my hat if
it turned out not to be true for people of all ages".
He went on to say, "Some people like the gym-rats
who think they can just carry on smoking just because they still have muscular
bodies are wrong. It will really mean that they can't carry on having muscular
physiques in a matter of time". Hear ye, hear ye, muscle lovers and
In the NU study, the researchers measured the rate
at which muscle protein was created in eight people who smoked at least 20
cigarettes a day for at least 20 years, and eight non-smokers with the same
They gave all the research subjects an infusion of
blood with a "tagged" amino acid - substances that help form proteins. Then
samples of muscle were taken from the thighs of the subjects before and after
the infusion to measure the rate of muscle protein creation which helps in the
daily maintenance of body muscle mass.
They found that the rate of muscle protein
creation was "substantially less" in smokers, with them making about 25% less
muscle protein. In otherwords, if you are a young and healthy individual who
is building muscles, your muscle growth rate could be 25% slower than your
Easy Way To Quit
Another negative effect was that smokers had
more myostatin. Myostatin not only inhibits muscle growth, it also breaks
muscles down. Professor Rennie, a professor of clinical physiology said the
muscle-wasting effects of smoking were particularly damaging to older people
because the muscles on their thighs in particular are badly affected and they
are more prone to falls and accidents and these falls could sometimes cause
permanently disability and even death.
"While I am sure this phenomenon is happening to
people of all ages, it is especially worrying for smokers as they get older.
As these smokers age, their ability to maintain muscle is drastically
curtailed”, the Professor said.
One of the main areas where muscle mass is being
rapidly lost is in the thighs (quadriceps and hamstrings), which stabilizes
the movement in hips, so these are too precious muscles to lose.
Senior citizens who smoke should imagine not being
able to get off the toilet as their muscle mass decreases. And then once they
lose more than a certain threshold they can even lose the ability to move.
That is indeed tragic because they will start losing their balance and having
frequent falls which could be fatal. So you gym rats, is it time to give
How To Quit Smoking Easily
Some of you who know me may ask why am I writing
this article since I am a heavy smoker for more than 30 years, right? You know
something? I finally quit smoking after several attempts over the last few
Quitting smoking through sheer will power and
dogged determination may not be effective for most people because nicotine is
a very addictive drug, and especially so if you are a heavy smoker like I was.
So how did I do it? Well, I used
quit smoking aids such as "quit smoking self hypnosis" and also nicotine gums.
So, for the sake of your muscles, QUIT