Ramadan ‘good opportunity’ to quit smoking: Turkish health expert

Ramadan ‘good opportunity’ to quit smoking: Turkish health expert

The holy month of Ramadan, during which Muslims around the world refrain from eating from dusk until dawn, is “a good opportunity” to quit smoking, according to professor Galip Ekuklu from Trakya University.

Raising concerns that some smokers often light a cigarette right after breaking their fast, Ekuklu said: “It is very harmful to break the fast with cigarettes. When you smoke during iftar, the acid secretion in the stomach increases, causing stomach disorders. Also, the lungs are adversely affected because of smoking.”

Ekuklu, speaking to Anadolu Agency (AA), highlighted the harmful effects of tobacco products such as cigarettes, electronic cigarettes and vapes on human health. He also explained the psychological aspect of smoking addiction during Ramadan. Noting that smokers spend a long-time without nicotine as they are fasting, Ekuklu said that psychological addiction affects people more than nicotine addiction itself, as they spend hours “waiting” for iftar to smoke.

Advising that those who want to quit smoking should act with absolute determination, Ekuklu said: “If they intend to quit smoking during Ramadan, it is very important to be determined and to set a time. Setting a time like ‘I will quit smoking in Ramadan’ is a helpful method that facilitates quitting the habit of smoking,” the health professional said, adding that nicotine patches can be used to eliminate nicotine with medication support from the Health Ministry.

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