More and more, smoking is being banned from public spaces. While the politics may prove sometimes controversial, the health benefits are well founded. Secondhand smoke can cause many of the same problems as smoking cigarettes yourself. The smoke from cigarettes and exhaled by smokers is a form of air pollution that has long been known to cause lung and heart problems while increasing the risk of various cancers. New research has extended the adverse side effects to now include weight gain and an increased risk of obesity.
Is smoke fattening?
Breathing secondhand smoke isn’t adding calories to your diet, it’s disrupting how your body functions to such a degree that your Insulin Efficiency can deteriorate and you can’t process energy from food correctly. Studies have shown that even living with a smoker is extremely bad for your health. The lungs are a sensitive place and what happens there can thoroughly affect the rest of the body.
Exactly how secondhand smoke interacts with our body to cause weight gain is the subject of a study published in theAmerican Journal of Physiology: Endocrinology and Metabolism. Researchers at Brigham Young University looked at the effects of secondhand smoke on the metabolic function of laboratory mice. When your metabolic rate is high, your body processes and uses the energy you eat efficiently, with little to no excess fat storage.
When exposed to secondhand smoke, however, the metabolic rate of the mice dropped, causing immediate weight gain and its attendant problems, like diabetes, heart disease and stroke.
Corruption in the powerhouse of the cell
The reason that secondhand smoke causes such chaos in the body is cellular. Cigarette smoke contains dozens of different chemicals. Some of these stimulate a type of lipid, or fatty acid, in the body to actually cause the mitochondria of cells in your body to change. With cells unable to function properly, their ability to absorb the energy plummets, hence the storage of fat and weight gain.
What you can do
It’s tough to avoid 100% of all secondhand smoke. While public smoking may be a finable offense, most of the time you can’t totally escape. Having said that, you can cut back your exposure by avoiding areas where smokers congregate.
In fact, researchers found that by inhibiting the lipid from interacting the mitochondria, they could stop the metabolic rate from decreasing. That’s not a practical treatment for anyone, but at least it shows promise.
The best thing to do is work to improve your Insulin Efficiency and metabolic rate on your own. Avoiding negative influences on your health is important, but even more important is engaging in positive activities, like a healthy diet and plenty of exercise. Even a few minutes of exercise can be beneficial.
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