Smoking cigarettes has short-term health benefits
Issue date: 11/18/05 Section: Sci-Tech
Once you quit smoking it takes only three days for the cilia in your respiratory system to start regenerating and in turn the cilia once again start to protect your lungs from harmful pollutants. The cilia normally return to their full functioning capacity about six months after quitting smoking. This shows that the effect that smoking has on your body is largely reversible, assuming that you quit before you actually have malignant cancer cells.
A study done in 2003 by Donald Massaro, et. al titled "Calorie-related rapid onset of alveolar loss, regeneration, and changes in mouse lung gene expression" was done on mice. This study was extrapolated to humans, and shows that the amount of calorie intake also has a strong effect on the lungs. When kept in conditions nearing that of starvation, the lungs show emphysema-like symptoms, but when normal eating patterns resume the lungs can take in more oxygen again and therefore, lung regeneration rapidly takes place. So if lungs can recover from emphysema-like symptoms and regenerate to normal capacity, it follows that the lungs could regenerate themselves after actual emphysema, or other ill effects from smoking.
A study printed in 2001 by Michael Houlihan, et. al. titled "Effects of smoking/nicotine on performance and event-related potentials during a short-term memory scanning task" showed that smoking cigarettes, or more specifically the nicotine in cigarettes, has a positive effect on short-term memory. A "denicotinized" cigarette and a "nicotine-yielding" cigarette were used to show the difference between the amount of nicotine ingested and the effect on short-term memory. This study basically showed that smoking shortens response time and it also positively affects event-related potentials. The response time was more greatly affected so, this shows that nicotine shortens response time by affecting response-related processes.