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Quit smoking: Your heart will thank you
March 12th, 2013
04:01 PM ET

Quit smoking: Your heart will thank you

Cigarette smoking increases your heart rate, narrows the walls of your blood vessels and reduces the amount of oxygen being delivered to your system, among other things. That’s why smoking is considered a major risk factor for cardiovascular disease.

Unfortunately, obesity is also a risk factor for cardiovascular disease. And most smokers gain between 6 and 13 pounds in the six months after they quit, according to a new study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

The benefits of quitting smoking are well known. “Cigarette smoking has short- and long-term cardiovascular effects that are reversible shortly after cessation,” according to the study authors.

But the researchers wanted to know if the weight gain following smoking cessation would counteract the positive effects quitting has on your cardiovascular system.
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Breastfeeding may not reduce obesity risk
March 12th, 2013
04:00 PM ET

Breastfeeding may not reduce obesity risk

We've heard a lot about the benefits of breastfeeding, and the idea that it reduces the risk of a child becoming overweight or obese has been around for decades.

But a new study in the Journal of the American Medical Association contradicts that idea. It suggests that though breastfeeding has many benefits, reducing the likelihood that a child becomes obese or overweight may not be one of them. The evidence to support this conclusion is strong as the study was based on a large randomized controlled trial.
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About this blog

Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.

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