Smoking Isn’t Why You’re Thin


If you’re willing to put aside the cancer and emphysema and be a smoker, your last excuse might have just gone up in smoke. Smokers often claim that their habit serves as an appetite suppressant. They may be risking disease later in life, but at least they’re preventing obesity today. But that contention has just been disproved. For the most part, smokers are actually more overweight than non-smokers.

The study looked at 6,000 smokers and non-smokers, comparing their body-mass index (BMI, a ratio of height to weight) and their waist-hip ratio (WHR). Lo and behold, the smokers were not the waifish models one has come to expect. Rather, both male and female smokers had higher WHR and male smokers had higher BMIs.

Could this mean that overweight people are simply more likely to smoke? Possibly, though during the course of the study, female smokers’ WHR increased, while female non-smokers stayed the same. It’s enough to poke holes in smokers’ last hiding place. There is nothing good to come from smoking, and the medical costs associated with caring for smokers affect us all.

[Image: Flickr user Law PrieR]

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