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A 23-year-old female asked:

So the oldest man in the world (126) and oldest woman(122) both smoked a pack to two a day. if smoking is so awful how did they manage to live so long?

3 doctor answers7 doctors weighed in
Dr. Elizabeth Wallen
Pediatrics 35 years experience
Good genes: and good luck. And for every 126 year old you can find that smokes I'll show you 100,000 people that died miserable deaths prematurely. Do yourself a favor....don't smoke.
Dr. Ed Friedlander
Pathology 44 years experience
Is that so?: The guy in Brazil and the lady in Cambodia, right? It's often hard to know whether these claims for very long life are authentic. Anything that's bizarre or unexpected is "news". What I do know as a physician is that the impact of smoking on life expectancy, and the quality of that life, is glaringly obvious. If folks beat the odds, so much the better. Do yourself a favor and don't smoke.
Dr. Dean Giannone
Internal Medicine 25 years experience
Unknown.: There are some people who seem to be genetically protected from certain ills, like smoking. They're few and far between. I wouldn't assume you to be one of those people. Don't smoke!

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Last updated Sep 29, 2016

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