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Monday, July 20, 2009

American Legion Magazine Features

I decided to go straight to the source for some answers to the Legion stand on smoking. The Legion publishes a monthly magazine full of information vital to the members with a motto of "For God and Country Since 1919." I just wanted to see what may be relevant to the discussion of smoking in the publication. Here are excerpts from the August, 2009 American Legion Magazine: 1. In the article, "Attention, Couch Potatoes," physiologist Richard Cotton urges sedentary men ages 45 and older and women ages 55 and older or "anyone with two or more heart-disease risk factors (obesity, smoking, high blood pressure, diabetes, or family history of heart disease) should see a doctor. 2. In a health article, "Top Tips For Healthy Eyes," one of the tips is "Quit smoking. Smoking is harmful to the eyes and, even if you don't smoke, it is advisable to stay away from smoky environments." 3. The issue contained numerous advertisements in the for legal help with mesothelioma and lung cancer damages. 4. The issue contained an advertisement for a battery-powered, continuous flow oxygen concentrator. Of course, people with oxygen devices must not be close to flame, to fire, or to smoking. 5. The issue featured an advertisement tor Daduet, medication for elevated blood pressure and cholesterol. The American Diabetes Association reports that smoking increases cholesterol levels and the levels of some other fats in your blood as well as increasing blood pressure. 6. The issue had numerous advertisements for erectile dysfunction such as Vacurect, Viagra, Levitra, and Cialis. The American Diabetes Association reports that smoking can cause impotence. 7. The issue displayed a deluxe, full page advertisement for TheraSeed, a minimally invasive outpatient treatment for those with a prostate cancer diagnosis. Men with heavy smoking exposure also face a 60 percent increased risk of prostate cancer overall relative to nonsmokers. Compared to nonsmokers, current smokers experienced a 40 percent increase in the risk of prostate cancer. (Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention. July, 2003) 8. The article in the Living Well section of the issue was entitled, "How To Thrive In Spite of Diabetes." The article warns about taking care of high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and eye health in very specific terms. Needless to say, smoking for those with diabetes is very dangerous. According to The Diabetes Monitor, smoking and diabetes together make a person 11 times more likely to die of a heart attack or stroke. Smoking one cigarette cuts the body's ability to use insulin by 15%. People are twice as likely to have circulation and wound healing problem leading to leg and foot enfections, sometimes requiring amputation. And, smokerss with diabetes are more likely to develop nerve damage. 9. And, in the Commander's Message from National Commander David K. Rehbein, a quote stated: "As a new school year begins, I implore my fellow Legionnaires to make themselves available to schools, church groups and extracuricular programs for young children." I'm sure all of these activities are placing Legionnaires in smoke-free environments with American children. I have the issue of the magazine on hand for those who wish to verify its contents. I wonder when we are going to listen to our own instructions about the warnings of smoking. More troubling to me, when are smokers going to put the health and welfare of others above their own personal preferences? I think greed and personal inconsideration are vital avenues to explore for the answer.
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