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|2008-12-16 - Weird News|
Linda Young - AHN Editor
Study Finds Teen Girls Who Smoke May Develop Thicker Waistlines
Helsinki, Finland (AHN) -- Teenage girls who smoke cigarettes are at an increased risk for developing not only lung cancer later in life, but thicker waistlines as well, researchers say.
While girls who smoke 10 cigarettes or more a day as teens have an increased risk of developing a wide waistline later in life teenage boys don't appear to have the same risk, said lead study author Suoma Saarni, a researcher with the Department of Public Health in Helsinki. But she said scientists don't know why that is true.
Researcher found that girls who smoke 10 cigarettes per day or more are at greatest risk, particularly for abdominal obesity, with waist sizes an average 1.34 inches larger than nonsmokers' waists as young adults.
The study followed thousands of twins and is published in the February 2009 issue of the American Journal of Public Health.
"My hunch is that women are more likely to smoke for weight control, especially in adolescence," Sherry Pagoto, assistant professor in clinical psychology at the University of Massachusetts Medical School, said in a statement . "When people do quit smoking, one of the reasons they gain weight is that they increase their consumption of foods. They'll start snacking at the times they used to smoke."
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