Since it has many ill effects on health and yet its use is becoming almost universal among growing youths and adults of both sexes, its poisonous properties must be better understood. The secondary schools should teach the facts about the poisonous effects of tobacco. The addicted victim of tobacco smoking feels a “soothing” or narcotic or “dopey” effect on his nerves, but does he or she remember the nauseating feeling and other unpleasant reactions produced by the first whiffs while learning to smoke?
According to a scientist, Tibbles, “The cells of the brain in the thinking area degenerate to loss of power of thought, concentration, and worry!” Yet the members of the healing professions, physicians and surgeons themselves, in the majority, smoke. Since they are so weak as to be addicted to the tobacco habit, how can they have the courage to enlighten their patients on the truth about tobacco? They often approve their patients’ desire to smoke even if smoking means aggravating advanced heart degeneration, or the aggravation of other diseases.
Tobacco constricts the blood vessels; therefore tobacco smoking shortens life because it poisons the cells of the organs that are essential to life and health. It is interesting to note that tobacco contains many more poisons than the well-known nicotine- Organic efficiency is progressively reduced until vital organs necessary to good health are de-generated beyond repair.
According to Kellogg and others, tobacco contains not less than fifteen to twenty poisons besides nicotine: nicotinine, nicotelline, pyradine, hydrocyanic acid, ammonia, carbon monoxide. Some of these poisons are generated in the tobacco during the smoking of cigars and cigarettes.
The tobacco interests are growing in material wealth while the health of the people is breaking down- Smoking by men and women, by boys and girls, takes its toll in diseases of the vital organs, the organs that are essential to the health of the body.
If the addict claims that he does not inhale, as one often hears a smoker remark, he is under a false belief. He breathes while he smokes and nature is not so kind as to filter out the tobacco poisons.
As long as food and drink are poorly chosen, as long as a person resorts to stimulants and narcotics in his ordinary daily routine, the nervous system, especially the thinking portion of the brain, is blurred and dazed from intoxication of its cells. Thinking is an effort. Ideas and facts are difficult to correlate. The “next fellow” is expected to do his thinking for him. He must support a host of middle-men between himself and his destiny. He lets politicians take over his political problems, the social worker take care of his social problems, the physician drug and dope him. When he is sick, the surgeon performs his major and minor operations, which could often be avoided if he did his own thinking about his health and intelligently regulated the functions of his body.
If a person is his own master, he will become mentally and morally free from the props and crutches to which he must hold on because he is impaired in health. Tobacco contributes a considerable share in deteriorating one’s physical and mental health.