Asthma

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THE ANTI-SMOKER MOVEMENT SEEMS KEEN TO SUPRESS ITS OWN EVIDENCE.  WHY WERE THESE STUDIES NOT REPORTED AND PROMOTED?  THE ANSWER IS SIMPLE: BECAUSE THEY FAIL TO SUPPORT THE POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC GOALS OF ANTI-SMOKING, THE FRAUD OF THE CENTURY.

November 11 - Tobacco Smoke Not An Issue -  The stake continues to be driven into the heart of the lie that smoking causes or exacerbates asthma.  From the National Jewish Medical and Research Center comes a report that the heavier pollution during the winter months does not worsen asthma.  

A three year study focusing on minority children in urban areas found that respiratory infections, such as colds, rather than particulate matter, such as found in secondhand smoke, is responsible for triggering asthma attacks.  The press release ends with some common sense advice for parents to not worry about air pollution but pay closer attention to "preventing and treating the real wintertime threat to their children's health - colds and other respiratory infections."

For years the tobacco control industry attempted to fool the public into believing that smoking and secondhand smoke causes asthma.  That dead end wasted millions of dollars and deflected attention from the real causes of asthma.  Legitimate researchers have moved on to more productive pursuits.  Asthma and smoking is just one of many cons that has been foisted upon the public.  So intent in linking all ill health with tobacco real research has suffered with neglect. 

Anti-tobacco owes us all a huge apology.

 

October 10 - Laughter Triggers Asthma -  Laughter is more likely to trigger an asthma attack in a child than exercise or smog, according to an Australian study.

Richard Henry and colleagues at the University of New South Wales analysed all cases over a six-month period of children who were taken to the emergency department at Sydney Children's Hospital because they were suffering from an asthma attack. Almost one third had what Henry calls "mirth-triggered asthma".

"This is one example where laughter is not the best medicine," Henry told delegates to a meeting of the Thoracic Society of Australia and New Zealand in Cairns. "We like our children to be happy but if children with asthma can't be happy because it brings on asthma, that's a major potential problem."

We toyed with treating this story as a hoot but decided to include it as evidence.  Evidence that secondhand smoke has been discarded as an agent of the asthma attack.  Although asthma continues to be a growing problem for children in rich countries, anti-tobacco's slander that secondhand smoke is the culprit no longer is holds water.  The reason for this is that, after innumerable efforts costing millions of dollars, no research has linked secondhand smoke to asthma.  The link simply doesn't exist and researchers must move beyond blaming smoking or risk losing funding.  When the choice is between anti-smoking ideology or diminished pay checks, anti-tobacco is discarded.

 

February 26 - EPA Scratches Its Head In Disbelief -  Far fewer children are showing high levels of lead in their blood or the effects of secondhand smoke, a government report has found - but childhood asthma rates are doubling.  

The number of children whose blood levels showed effects from second hand smoke declined by about one-fifth to one-half between 1988 and 2000, depending on their levels of exposure. Those figures are obtained by tracking the amount of cotinine, a breakdown product of nicotine in blood.

 But the report also found that the percentage of children getting asthma has doubled in two decades, rising from 3.6 percent in 1980 to 8.7 percent, or 6.3 million children by 2001.

What more can be said?  Even the Environmental Protection Agency, the author of the discredited, vacated and debunked secondhand smoke report, admits that asthma is not caused by secondhand smoke.  This admission should make the public see red.  After years of harping that smoking and secondhand smoke causes nearly every ailment under the sun, the evidence keeps mounting that the so-called experts have been barking up the wrong tree.  Asthma rates rise and the EPA and its cohorts in the tobacco control industry scream secondhand smoke.  Smoking declines and the hysterics still scream about smoking.  Now that the end of their road has been reached, they scratch their heads in puzzlement and ask for more money to figure it all out.  Dismantling the EPA would be a very good start.

 

Conflicting Evidence

Asthma Up, Smoking Down - At the risk of beating a very dead horse, we highlight this story from California, the state that defines hypochondria.  In an article about the growing number of asthma cases erupting in the state, there is not one mention of secondhand smoke.  The story notes that the percentage of Californians who have been diagnosed with asthma at some point in their lives is significantly higher than the national average.  The health department and the anti-tobacco enterprise are constantly crowing that California has the second lowest rate of smoking in the nation.  The San Francisco Bay Area, the most health obsessed region in the state has higher rates of asthma than the rest of the state.

The story notes that $12-million will be spent to improve treatment and prevention.  Considering where this money will end up, it's likely that there will be no improvement but lots of behavior-modification schemes.  What has been improved is the financial status of the usual health "charities" even though they have been presided over the increase in asthma.

"There are a lot of strategies the task force may come up with," said Beth Saiki, director of lung health programs for the American Lung Association of San Francisco and San Mateo counties. "It's very exciting to have that funding available."

"Clean" Living Tied To Asthma  "Our clean living ways perhaps might be leading to this global rise in asthma and allergies," Liu said.  Most people assume asthma results from air pollution or other dirt in the environment. But it may be caused by just the opposite. The latest research shows the cleaner the environment, the more cases of asthma. It has to do with our immune systems.

This report notes that rate asthma has increased 154  percent over the past 20 years.  The number of smokers over the same 20 years has declined.  It's self-evident that the increased rate in asthma cannot be tied to exposure of secondhand smoke.  There have been several studies that suggest that our hyper-consciousness of "health" and our attempt to raise children in an antiseptic environment contribute to weak immune systems.  Counter intuitive though it may be, this theory is worth exploring.  The wasteful and divisive attempts to link secondhand smoke with asthma are smokescreens and should be halted.

Air Pollution/Exercise Asthma Link - "Also, the researchers couldn't explain the increase in asthma by other factors such as socioeconomic status, family history of asthma or allergy, or housing conditions, McConnell said."

One of the "other factors" for the puzzling rise in asthma rates, not mentioned at all in this story, is secondhand smoke.  This latest asthma study is yet another shovel full of earth dumped upon the grave of the myth of secondhand smoke as a cause for asthma.  Not for lack of trying, anti-tobacco continues to come up empty-handed in its quest to link secondhand smoke with asthma.

The researchers found that children active in team sports in California communities with high ozone concentrations are far more likely to develop asthma than active children in areas of low ozone concentration.  Exposure to pollutants other than ozone did not alter the effect of team sports. (Asthma in exercising children exposed to ozone: a cohort study, Dept of Preventive Medicine, University of Southern California School of Medicine, Los Angeles, McConnell, Berhane, Gilliland, et al.)

Cold air and exercise trigger asthma According to the first long-term study of patients with "at risk" asthma, the key triggers for asthma attacks are: cold air, exercise, the menstrual cycle and aspirin. NO mention of ETS.  The study was conducted by the National Heart and Lung Institute in the UK, and its findings were reported at a recent meeting of the British Thoracic Society.

The study found that 70% of the asthma patients in the study group said that cold air and exercise was a key trigger for an asthma attack; 2% claimed allergies to peanuts could trigger an attack; 14% said aspirin was a common trigger; 10% of females said their menstrual cycle was related to their attacks; and 55% said laughter could trigger an attack.

Apparently few if any claimed ETS exposure triggered an attack. This is, of course, at odds with the antis' claims that smoking bans must be enacted to protect asthmatics.

Asthma and weight gain - This  brand new study about ETS and asthma finds that ETS "was NOT significantly associated with asthma" (Beckett WS, Jacobs DR, Yu X, Iribarren C, Williams OD, "Asthma Is Associated with Weight Gain in Females but Not Males, Independent of Physical Activity," Amer. Journal of Respir. Crit Care Med, Vol 164, No. 11, Dec 2001, pp 2045-2050).
Asthma is not caused by smoking - That statement comes as a no surprise to us, since we already have massive scientific documentation to support it. What is surprising is that the statement comes from a notoriously rabid, pharmaceutically-supported antismoking organisation: the Canadian Lung Association. Make no mistake: the rest of their site is filled with disinformation/false information about smoking, and the promotion of smoking as a social "problem," while the real social problem is, of course, the political and ethical degeneration of groups like the CLA - a severe, global phenomenon in bad need of tough corrective measures; a good one would be forbidding the non-profits from receiving funding from those corporations that have a conflict of interest with their public activities. At any rate, even the CLA states, unequivocally, that smoking is NOT a cause of asthma - something that antitobacco marionettes keep stating (or implying) in their propaganda of lies on primary and passive smoking. As we always said: when you smoke, you hurt no one.
Asthma link to English speakers - "Scientists are still puzzled as to why asthma is on the increase and why there is such geographical variation. Potential causes include climate, dust mites, pet hair, diet and exposure to dust." A number of countries now have higher smoking rates than many of the English-speaking countries, but asthma still is largely a mystery. How much of a mystery? Check out the headline of another recent article listed on the page we link to above: "Sunflower oil may contribute to rise in childhood asthma". Such a sea of uncertainty should drown hysterical fears about smokers as a veritable fountainhead of asthma for those around them. But it won't, as we all know by now. Too much antitobacco money at stake. The frauds on smoking must flow.
Stress And Childhood Asthma - Another signal that anti-tobacco's false association between asthma and secondhand smoke has played itself out comes with this study looking into whether parental stress levels coincide with childhood asthma.  Researchers found that children whose parents had difficulty coping are far more likely to develop asthma than the offspring of parents whose lives hold less stress.  Early stress is thought to damage children's immune systems.

What's Causing Asthma, A New Look - "The rise in respiratory problems could not be linked to household risk factors such as passive smoking, gas cooking, pets or low parental education attainment because those factors declined over the period, the team reports." In it's quest to demonize smoking and smokers, anti-tobacco has been shameless in fastening onto any health phenomenon and tagging it as caused by tobacco.  The bogus link between secondhand smoke and asthma is particularly inane since both childhood and adult asthma rates have increased dramatically during the period in which smoking rates declined. Researchers at Leicester University rightly reject tobacco smoke as a cause and pose an intriguing theory that today's hyper-paranoia about health may play a part in the huge numbers of those suffering from asthma.

Does tobacco smoke prevent atopic disorders? A study of two generations of Swedish residents - "In a multivariate analysis, children of mothers who smoked at least 15 cigarettes a day tended to have lower odds for suffering from allergic rhino-conjunctivitis, allergic asthma, atopic eczema and food allergy, compared to children of mothers who had never smoked (ORs 0.6-0.7). Children of fathers who had smoked at least 15 cigarettes a day had a similar tendency (ORs 0.7-0.9)."
Diet and Hygene Could Be Behind Asthma Epidemic - "The increase was not just linked to allergies. The incidence of viral wheeze, the response to a virus infection, rose from nine per cent to 19 per cent. The rise in respiratory problems could not be linked to household risk factors such as passive smoking, gas cooking, pets or low parental education attainment because those factors declined over the period, the team reports." - Although reason and scientific realities are irrelevant to antismoking corruption & hysteria, here is another voice that belays the passive smoke fraud.
ETS: Salutary Effect On Asthma? - Medical researchers from several UK medical schools set out to determine whether asthmatic children of smokers seek medical attention more than asthmatics who parents do not smoke.  Their conclusion:  High levels of parental smoking in the home are associated with a reduction in health care contacts for asthma. 
Asthma: the politics of blaming tobacco smoke - Veteran researcher Martha Perske has written another well documented article on the EPA's contortion of the facts about ETS and asthma. Since the antismoking propaganda is still going strong on this facet of the colossal antismoking fraud, it's important that the readership gets the straight facts to counter the antismoking lies. For more research material from Martha Perske, click here.
Smoke And The Asthma Epidemic: A Reality Check - "We've all heard that smoking and second-hand smoke cause asthma, but a growing body of evidence is challenging the veracity of this old saw. The most recent study to exonerate smoking and tobacco smoke as a cause of asthma was published in the British Medical Journal July 8, 2000."

We link to the site of the National Smokers Alliance, where more evidence of yet another misconception about smoking is torn apart by analysis of the scientific evidence available.

doc04.gif (346 bytes)Self-reporting and politically correct association of asthma with passive smoking? Yes, of course, but "...not as strong as many believe") - Risk Factors for Acute Exacerbations of Symptoms - American Lung Association/American Thoracic Society International Conference Day 1 - April 25, 1999 "Passive cigarette smoke often has been thought to increase the risk of active asthma, but studies to date have not demonstrated this association convincingly. Leitch et al assessed this issue in a questionnaire to more then 7,400 college students..."
doc04.gif (346 bytes)Some important admissions by the anti-smoker movement -- kept quiet, of course! (II) - Environmental Control and Immune Modulation in Asthma Treatment - American Lung Association/American Thoracic Society International Conference Day 3 - April 27, 1999 "Reducing allergen exposure, although intuitively obvious as a management approach, has had a less than stellar track record when applied to asthma control in clinical practice.... Even though allergen levels can be significantly reduced through use of such methods [as high efficiency particulate removers, vacuuming, and pet washing], clinical disease changes very little in response."

 Oops! There goes a good chunck of the theory about tobacco allergy... also confirmed by the fact that is those countries where antismoking hysteria is not developed (thus smokers' right to smoke in public is not suffocated) we don't see asthmatics choking or dropping dead anywhere... are we talking about hysterical hypocondria? Or perhaps asthma is viral? Obviously we are not sure -- though the fabulously well-funded anti-smoker movement shows absolute certainty when it comes to tobacco! See below for more information.

doc04.gif (346 bytes)Some important admissions by the anti-smoker movement -- kept quiet, of course! (III) - The Role of Infections in Asthma - There were some important admissions at the American Lung Association/American Thoracic Society conference in April 1999. They never made it into the mass media, of course. This document is a summary of the conference (day 3).

 First, there's an admission that the evidence indicates that respiratory infections can CAUSE asthma, not merely exacerbate it. This is an important distinction, and is key to how the anti-smokers have falsely blamed smoking and passive smoking by confounding. (comments by Carol Thompson)

 Some quotes: "Most asthma, especially in children, appears to involve allergic inflammation of the airway mucosa. But clinicians have long suspected that viral infection of the respiratory tract might be important not only as a cause of asthma exacerbations but perhaps also as a cause or contributor to the pathogenesis of asthma itself."

 "Until recently, bacterial pathogens were not suspected as important contributors to asthma, except by a handful of epidemiological investigators who noted a strong association between serological evidence of infection with C. pneumoniae and asthma."

 

MORE STUDIES AND EVIDENCE

biblio.gif (2261 bytes)Asthma - "Unexpectedly, the strongest connections were found between signs of C tr infections and reported asthma, symptoms of wheezing and breathlessness and BHR found. This relationship persisted after correction for atopy and smoking in a model of logistic regression.... "
Socioeconomic Status and Indicators of Asthma in Children - Here is a 1995 Canadian study from the Respiratory Epidemiology Unit, Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, and Department of Sociology, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada. This study shows no association between asthma in children and Environmental Tobacco Smoke. A pet, for example, is much more likely to be associated with child asthma than ETS. Yet, our "honest and concerned" health authorities have never mentioned the existence of this study. Like the large majority of the studies we publish, no tobacco money for this one. This research is another nail in the coffin full of lies of the antismoking gang.

 


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