Second-hand smoke can make your kids fat, dumb

Washington: Smokers, second-hand smoke can give your children a larger waist and poorer cognition, according to a new study.

Augusta University’s Catherine Davis said that the take-home message is that for these children, smoke exposure was connected to two major adverse health outcomes, one above the neck and one below the neck.

Researchers looked at passive smoke exposure in 220 overweight or obese 7-11-year-old boys and girls. They found smoke exposure associated with nearly all measures of adiposity in the children, including bigger bellies and overall fat. “And every single one of our cognitive measures was poorer in the smoke-exposed children,” said Davis.

“All the bad things fat does to us, passive smoking makes worse,” said study co-author Dr. Martha S. Tingen.

“If you are breathing in second-hand smoke, it’s almost as bad as if you were smoking the cigarette yourself,” Tingen said. Immediate effects include a lowering of the protective cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein, or HDL, and an increase in the disease-producing low-density lipoprotein, or LDL. Researchers are not certain, when or if, the negative effects will be reversed.

The study appears in the journal Childhood Obesity. (ANI)