Physical exercise could help teen smokers kick the habit, new research has found.
Wednesday, May 22, 2013
Posted by: Stephanie Marquart
A study undertakenby America's George Washington University found that exercising - even for just 20 minutes a day - could be enough to boost the chances of giving up smoking.
The research involved 233 teenagers from 19 nearby schools, with participants typically smoking one pack of cigarettes each day on weekends and around half a pack during the week, eurekalert.org reports.
The group was then split into three smaller sections, with the first given an intensive anti-smoking program as well as an exercise regime. The second group was set just the anti-smoking program, while the third simply underwent a smoking cessation lecture.
It was found that whichever smoking cessation scheme was prescribed, all the teens who increased the volume of exercise they undertook saw a drop in smoking to just four cigarettes a day.
This result, experts thought, was down to the endorphins released during exercise controlling cravings, while being supplemented by feelings of good health - which made the participants not want to smoke as much.
Speaking to gponline.com of the results, research leader Dr. Kimberly Horn, explained: "Our study supports the idea that encouraging one healthy behavior can serve to promote another, and it shows that teens, often viewed as resistant to behavior change, can tackle two health behaviors at once".