Want to quit smoking? Finding a home away from the tobacco shop may help

  • PTI, London
  • Updated: Aug 18, 2016 08:57 IST
Smokers who have to walk 500 metres or longer from their home to the nearest tobacco shop are more likely to kick the butt, suggests a new study. (Shutterstock)

It is not east to quit smoking once it becomes a daily habit. Several ways, such as chewing gum and vaping have been suggested to help people let go of the unhealthy practise. Adding to the list, researchers have now come up with a novel idea to help those who want to stay away from nicotine. All you need to do is live in a place that is at least 500 metres away from the nearest tobacco shop.

Anna Pulakka from University of Turku in Finland and colleagues used data from two studies of smokers and former smokers to examine changes in distance to a tobacco shop and home with smoking behaviour.

Read: What not smoking means for your health and wallet

Study populations included 15,218 smokers and former smokers from one study and 5,511 from the second study.

Each 500-metre increase in distance from home to the nearest tobacco shop was associated with a 20% to 60% increase in the odds of quitting, researchers said.

Increased distance was not associated with lower odds of relapse by former smokers, they said.

Read: Smoking weed and tobacco joints hampers your chances of quitting

“We found robust evidence suggesting that among Finnish adults who smoked, increase in the distance from home to a tobacco outlet increased the odds of quitting smoking,” researchers said.

The findings were published in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine.

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