It is a truth universally acknowledged that smoking is bad for your health. With increasing evidence that cigarettes can cause everything from strokes to cancer, a smoker in the 21st century does so in the full knowledge that they’re playing a risky game of Russian roulette. But while anti-smoking ads and warnings are now the norm, advertising was once used to preach quite the opposite!
Tobacco first came to England in 1565, brought back by Admiral Sir John Hawkins from his travels overseas, and for the first twenty years smoking remained a pastime of sailors.
By the turn of the century smoking had started to gain popularity in other circles, but it wasn’t without its critics. In 1604 King James I wrote that smoking was “loathsome to the eye, hateful to the nose, harmful to the brain [and] dangerous to the lungs” and consequently increased the tax on tobacco by a rather hefty 4,000%. Interestingly, he also noted that upon dissection, the lungs of several great smokers had been found to be coated with a sooty substance, but it wasn’t enough to put people off. Read in full
An April 2012 article in the GP magazine PulseAll smokers should be put on varenicline, says QIPP analysis highlights research commissioned by NICE (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence) which suggests varenicline taken for 12 weeks after smoking cessation reduces relapse rates more than alternative medicines.