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Ex-smokers 'gain extra decade'

Women smokers can earn themselves 10 years of extra life by quitting the habit before middle age, say scientists.

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Research into smoking 'cuts risk' of habit

Professor Sir Richard Peto, from Oxford University, who co-authored the study into smoking habits, said:

If women smoke like men, they die like men - but, whether they are men or women, smokers who stop before reaching middle age will on average gain about an extra 10 years of life.

Both in the UK and in the USA, women born around 1940 were the first generation in which many smoked substantial numbers of cigarettes throughout adult life. Hence, only in the 21st century could we observe directly the full effects of prolonged smoking, and of prolonged cessation, on premature mortality among women.

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