Go smoke-free for your heart

BLOOMINGTON – American Heart Month is celebrated every February by spreading awareness about how people can decrease their risk of heart disease and going smoke-free is one of the best things you can do for your heart.

Kristen Terry

IU Health Community Health Tobacco Prevention Coordinator Kristen Terry said, “Cigarettes have toxic chemicals that can damage a person’s heart and blood vessels, even if the smoke is second-hand.”

The U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) said this damage could lead to cardiovascular disease, which is the leading cause of death in the United States. 

The FDA also identified three smoking cessation benefits specifically related to your heart:

  • Your heart rate drops 20 minutes after you quit smoking.
  • The carbon monoxide level in your blood drops to normal, allowing more oxygen to vital organs like your heart, 12 hours after smoking cessation. 
  • Your risk of stroke decreases to that of lifetime nonsmokers within four years of quitting.

“Quitting smoking is important for your health, and the health of your loved ones,” said Terry.

Get free assistance from the Indiana Tobacco Quit Line at 1.800.QUIT.NOW or visit QuitNowIndiana.com for more information. For more on local tobacco prevention and control efforts, visit the Tobacco Free Coalition of Monroe County on Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/tobaccofreemonroe.