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Quitting Smoking is Worth It

People who stop smoking before they are 50 years of age cut their risk of death by 50 percent. By age 64, the death rate among former smokers who stay quit is about the same as it is among people who have never smoked.

These figures, reported by Ellen Gritz, Chair of Behavioral Sciences at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas, convey an important message: Quitting smoking is worth it. Cigarette smoking leads to one out of six deaths in the United States. Smoking is linked to 30 percent of cancer mortality, 87 percent of lung cancer deaths, 21 percent of coronary artery disease, and 82 percent of deaths from emphysema and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

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