Wednesday, October 24, 2012

More Word Of Wisdom Validation: Greek Study Reveals Enclosed Exposure To Second-Hand Smoke Can Impair Breathing Within 20 Minutes

In 1833, the Prophet Joseph Smith recorded the following in Section 89, verse 8 of the Doctrine & Covenants: "And again, tobacco is not for the body, neither for the belly, and is not good for man, but is an herb for bruises and all sick cattle, to be used with judgment and skill". Joseph Smith was not told why tobacco was not for the body. But he trusted the Lord and passed the word on to the Saints all the same.

The wisdom of that counsel has been scientifically validated once again. On October 23rd, 2012, the Daily Mail reported that a Greek study revealed than enclosed exposure to second-hand smoke can actually impair breathing within as little as 20 minutes. In the study, led by Dr. Panagiotis Behrakis of the University of Athens, the research team, also consisting of colleagues from the Hellenic Cancer Society in Greece and the Harvard School of Public Health, exposed 15 healthy participants to air heavily concentrated with smoke particles within an exposure chamber -- simulating a bar or moving car -- for 20 minutes. Researchers measured participants' total respiratory impedance, resistance, and reactance with the use of an impulse oscillometry, a noninvasive way of measuring the physical properties of respiratory movement during quiet breathing. Results showed that short-term exposure to concentrated second-hand smoke significantly and immediately impacted participants' airways, making them narrow and reducing the body’s oxygen intake. Dr. Behrakis chose to simulate cars and bars because those places are notorious for accumulating high concentrations of fine particles from smoking; non-smokers end up being forced to inhale extreme amounts directly into their lungs.

The Daily Mail story also referenced an additional study where scientists at Northumbria University reported that non-smokers regularly exposed to second-hand smoke were at risk of damaging their memory. They found that non-smokers exposed to second-hand smoke forgot almost 20 per cent more than the non-smokers who were not exposed. The Northumbria study was discussed in greater detail separately in another Daily Mail article published on September 13th, 2012.

So basically, second-hand smoke increases your chances of losing your lungs and your marbles. Unfortunately, Dr. Behrakis waxed a bit hyperbolic when discussing how governments should respond to the results, saying "Second-hand smoking is the most widespread form of violence exerted on children and workers on a global level. The whole issue needs to be recognised as a global problem of human rights violation". That's the type of "sky-is-falling" catastrophic nonsense that causes people to roll their eyes and immediately turn off. While the problem should be addressed, most people have become jaded by scare tactics. Second-hand smoke is a public nuisance, particularly for kids, but it's hardly a "human rights violation".

But it does show once again that the Lord knew what He was talking about when He revealed the Word of Wisdom to Joseph Smith. And it also shows that Joseph Smith, by recording it and passing it on, was indeed a true prophet. When a prophet speaks, it's smart to listen and to hearken.

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