Have Stress, Smoke Less

The Cologne Smoking Study (German only): An examination of why your after-shave seems to give off fumes? No; I’m afraid it’s nothing more lively than a study on smoking carried out by the Humanities and Medical faculties at the University of Cologne, covered here by Der Spiegel.

Still, it produced a surprising conclusion. Conventional wisdom has people smoking more the more they are under stress, but this study turns that on its head. How can that be? Silly, do keep in mind the wave of anti-smoking restrictions imposed in most EU countries from around 2005 on: these people are simply not allowed to smoke there in the office where they are struggling to meet deadline, and they don’t have time to get away somewhere where they may. So maybe they make up for it later, when the crisis is over? There’s no evidence for that.

Smokers should at least be relieved that this study stops well short of recommending any heightening of the stress-quotient among one’s employees as a means to get them to cut down on their tobacco consumption. Perhaps the thought in the back of their minds of the various diseases to which they are making themselves susceptible by their behavior – I won’t bother to list them here – has always been stressful enough.

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