I personally don't smoke. I've never really seen the appeal, and to me the risks have always outweighed the reward. I guess that means all the anti-smoking programs in grade school (and ads on TV) have worked on me, but that's a good thing right! Speaking of those ads: We've all heard about the health risks associated with smoking over and over again, but what if you quit?  Will your health improve?  Will your risk of disease go down? Read on to see what we've discovered...

Not only will your health improve if you quit, but it will start improving immediately. Seriously, your body starts to heal within minutes of quitting! Check out this timeline we found that shows how quickly the body starts to heal:


Crazy, right?

Now, even though I've never felt the addictive effects of tobacco and nicotine, I understand that it's hard to quit smoking. I've watched people try (and fail) my whole life.

Many of my aunts and uncles would smoke around me and my sister all of the time, and it always made my parents uncomfortable. Obviously my parents didn't want us picking up any bad habits, and sometimes my relatives just didn't understand that. Maybe it was because they had never been taught how unhealthy smoking was when they were growing up. Maybe it had been a long time since they had to think of anyone else but themselves. Either way smoking was a major point of tension in my family on many, many occasions during my childhood. Still I understand that it's a hard habit to kick.

But quitting is better than the alternative, right?  Especially when you skip over all the disease risks and get right to the biggest consequence of smoking, death. Another consideration? The huge cost associated with buying cigarettes! Check out this little (actually, HUGE) statistic:


4,300 deaths from tobacco...in Colorado each year alone! That's a pretty sobering reality, if you ask me.