February 9, 2011 - It's been two years since the Smoke Free Air Act went into effect in Iowa. It prohibits smoking inside all bars and restaurants. The University of Iowa says in the two years Iowa has been smoke free, Iowans reduced their risk of heart disease by staggering numbers.
"Hospital admissions related to heart disease is much less, including stroke after the Smoke Free Air Act," says Dr. Enrico Martin of the Iowa Heart Center. Admissions have gone down 24%, according to the University of Iowa. In just months, heart attack cases are down 8%. Strokes are down 5%. It's all thanks to the simple action of moving smokers outside. It's a break fans in the service industry are cheering about.
"I don't miss smelling smoke. It was nasty, ashes all over the table cloth. Now I don't have to worry about health," says server Dawny Valadez. Some smokers are even on board with the ban. "I smoked a pack a day until they redid the law. Now I'm down to half a pack so it's probably saving my lungs," says smoker Tyler Dolph.
The University of Iowa says 15% of all deaths in Iowa are caused by smoking. The research is simple. Doctors say, the less you smoke the longer you live. The Smoke Free Air act is saving hearts, lungs, and lives.
"I hope this is a wake up call. I think it would trickle down and promote a healthier lifestyle for Iowans," says Dr. Martin.
No matter what team you cheer for, every fan can enjoy the Super Bowl smoke free.
Dr. Martin is encouraged by the numbers, but he says Iowans still have a long way to go. Obesity and diabetes are on the rise.
VIDEO - Reference: SMOKING OUT: Two years after the smoking ban Iowans are healthier Heart disease is down 24% in the past 30 years, Emily Carlson Reporter, WHOTV.com, 2/6/2011.
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