• 08.20.10

There’s No Question That Secondhand Smoke Changes Your Genes

A new study reveals the true damage of secondhand smoke.


That’s it, it’s final: Secondhand smoke is bad for your body and actually changes your genes. Researchers at Weill Cornell Medical College tested bodily feedback as people lit up and inhaled nearby smoke and are now telling the world: Your body has a genetic response and your cells actually change, on a molecular level.


The finding is groundbreaking, but how will this influence people’s behavior, or more importantly, how will health campaign planners change their targeted messaging to draw upon such imagery to better influence people’s behavior?

[Top image: A menina da tattoo de guaraná via flickr/Marco Gomes, Homepage image via flickr/Half Sigma]

About the author

Jenara is an overseas reporter for Fast Company and a freelance writer/producer in Asia, regularly on CNNGo, and a graduate of Harvard and UC Berkeley.