Every Cigarette Consumes 11 Minutes of Life

Jan. 4, 2000
Research shows male smokers risk an average of 11 minutes off their lifespan with each cigarette smoked.

If you are looking for another reason to keep that new year's resolution to quit smoking, listen to the findings of a recent study.

Male smokers are robbed of an average of 11 minutes off lifespan with each cigarette smoked, UK researchers estimate.

Smokers could be missing out on a lot of living, researchers said, pointing out that 11 minutes is enough for a phone call to a friend or a healthy walk.

Dr. Mary Shaw and colleagues from the University of Bristol in England based the estimate on data from a survey of British households.

They calculated that the typical male smoker "will consume a total of 311,688 cigarettes" from age 17 until death at age 71.

In a separate analysis, researchers found that a lifetime of smoking reduces the lifespan of the average male smoker by 6.5 years, compared with non-smokers.

This means, the research team wrote, that "each cigarette has cost him, on average, 11 minutes of life."

Eliminating a full carton of cigarettes would buy the smoker an extra day and a half of life -- enough time to fly around the world or take in an opera, the researchers said.

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