I have just counted the number of times that I inhale and exhale over the course of a minute while ‘in repose’ – quietly sitting on the couch. I counted 12 inhalations/exhalations. Thus during the course of a day, I ‘breath in-and-out’ 12 x 60 x 24 = 17,280 times per day.

I have titled this post ‘Inhaling’ because any harmful substance can only enter the lungs when it is inhaled, and not when it is exhaled.

I smoke about 50 cigs per day. But I do not really inhale, in the sense that I breath the smoke deeply into my lungs. I tend to draw the smoke into my mouth and let it linger there while possibly drawing a bit of the smoke deeper, but not really deep. Or. for example, I often take the smoke into my mouth and then breath in through my nose. Or, I do all the above and then deliberately inhale.

I have several ways of enjoying tobacco. None of them have anything to do with health. All of them have to do with pleasure. Gosh! How I would hate to be thinking about health when I am enjoying my tobacco! Imagine worrying about your health while enjoying one pint of bitter! It does not bear thinking about.


So I breath some 17,000 times a day. How many of those breaths include tobacco smoke? I’m just trying to calculate. You see, I have stopped puffing while I have been typing that last sentence. And I have stopped puffing while I have been typing this sentence. Oopst! Lost my pen…. Got it. Take swig of vino and puff of cig. That was a mouthful and an inhale through the nose. Now where was I? Pause to contemplate…… Another puff. Another swig. Another puff.

I can stop recording because the pattern has become clear – I take a puff, on average, once per minute.

So, give or take a bit, I have puffed on my cig 12 times during 10 minutes (you must bear in mind that the cig which I am puffing on is one of my own creations and not one of those low quality, expanded tobacco products which Tobacco Control has created). Usually, my own creations last for about 15 minutes, so it is probable that I have puffed more often than usual.

Even so, my puffing has been, very roughly, about one puff per minute. Thus, my puffing ratio is 1 x 60 x 24 per day = 1540 puffs per day.

But wait! I said that I smoke 50 cigs per day. I sleep for about 8 hours, which means that I smoke 50 cigs in 16 hours, which means that I devour them at a rate of 50 divided by 16 = 3 and a bit cigs per hour. Not all the cigs that I devour are home-made, but that calculation sounds about right.


So I breath about 17,000 times per day. Of those breaths, some 1,500 contain tobacco smoke.


What do the other 15,500 breaths contain?

Would it not be very educating for the people to know what the ingredients of every breath we take are? We know that the ingredients are not just pure oxygen and pure nitrogen. There is a lot of crap in the air we breath and always has been.

What happens to dust, bacteria, pollen, etc when those substances are inhaled? How do healthy lungs deal with them? NOT A WORD ESCAPES THE MOUTHS OF ‘PUBLIC HEALTH’ ABOUT SUCH SUBSTANCES. And yet we breath such substances 15,500 times per day as compared with smokers breathing tobacco smoke 1,500 times per day.


There is a terrible stink of bullshit. The stink wafts around.

To go to the nub of the matter, it is worth asking the question: “How did it come to pass that Doll’s ‘Doctors Study’ was so biased”? There has been no confirmation of the dire results of ‘heavy smoking (25 cigs per day)’ in recent times. Did DOLL ET AL fiddle the figures? They did not need to. All they needed to do was ‘adjust’. That is, assume that those doctors who said that they smoked ‘moderately’ were lying and that they actually smoked heavily.

But even worse is the assumption that only tobacco mattered. Remember that lots of those doctors had been involved in two world wars. Also remember that there were horrible smogs caused by industry.


I do not distrust ‘National Statistics’. Any Government, other than a fascist or totalitarian one, would want to know ‘FACTS’. It could be true that Nat Stats is corrupt, but I doubt it. That does not mean that Nat Stats is always ‘clean as a whistle’. Despite that proviso, I think that Nat Stats is as objective as can possibly be.

But that does not mean that they are asking the right questions.


We ‘inhale’ stuff all the time. There is no such thing as ‘clean air’. The atmosphere is filthy. Our bodies absorb and deal with pollution.

It has always been so.


6 Responses to “Inhaling”

  1. Some French Bloke Says:

    I often take the smoke into my mouth and then breathe in through my nose.

    There’s also this possibility that Frank Davis recently described: I draw it into my mouth, and then I cool it and dilute it with an additional intake of air through my slightly opened mouth. If I don’t do it right (and occasionally I don’t) the hot concentrated smoke will make me cough explosively.

    And then there are those who just sort of make an attempt at swallowing the stuff. But then peristalsis (“the wormlike movement by which the alimentary canal or other tubular organs with both longitudinal and circular muscle fibers propel their contents”) applies to solids and liquids, not to aerosols, and the smoke is bound to just linger at the back of the throat (aka the aero-digestive cross-roads), while the epiglottis will prevent it from entering the airways.

    A serious study of the effects of ‘inhaling’ would have to take into account at least these three possibilities.
    But the inhaling issue wasn’t interesting to anti-smoking ‘researchers’, it was in fact highly inconvenient, given the positive ‘outcomes’ of inhalers in the London Hospitals Study, so they eschewed it for the first seven years of the Doctors Study and when they reintroduced it, it yielded similar results to those in the London Hospitals Study!

  2. junican Says:

    ” …and when they reintroduced it, it yielded similar results to those in the London Hospitals Study!

    I spent a lot of time on the Doctors Study, but I don’t remember anything about inhaling. It was Fisher who pointed out that the Hospital Study showed that inhaling appeared to be protective and that the figures were statistically significant.
    As you say, inconvenient.
    It’s amazing how a pimple has been turned into a huge boil, in need of lancing and thousands of laws to stop people getting non-existent boils.

    • Some French Bloke Says:

      I was quoting from memory an article called ‘When Genius Errs: R. A. Fisher and the Lung Cancer Controversy’, and more particularly this passage:

      “In their first case-control study, Doll and Hill showed a slight difference in reported inhalation by cases and controls, with controls reporting slightly more inhalation: 62
      percent among cases versus 67 percent among controls. This was surprising, but in their second case-control study this was not confirmed, and when they combined information
      about inhalation in both studies, the results were 67.5 percent inhaling among cases versus 65.9 percent among controls—essentially no difference.”

      A 10-page pdf can be viewed here:

      I clearly remember reading that inhaling was reintroduced in the Doctors’ questionnaires in the late 1950s. It stuck in my mind, having found that surprising as you also seem to do, but I can’t trace a source for that right now. Even so, the issue must have been kept as inconspicuous as possible for the rest of the duration of the ‘study’, and for very obvious motives…

    • Some French Bloke Says:

      but I don’t remember anything about inhaling

      Turns out I may well have first read about the reintroduction of inhaling in later Doctors Study questionnaires in the well-known essay “The Scientific Scandal of Antismoking”…
      But your largest essay about the Docs Study (linked to on the sidebar of your home page) also states that: “Between Nov 1957 and Oct 1958, Doll sent a second questionnaire to the male doctors. He discovered how many had quit, how many had reduced or increased their smoking, how many former quitters had started again. He also received information about cigar smoking and mixed smoking, and asked about inhaling.”

      • junican Says:

        Well spotted, SFB!!
        It may well be that he only asked about inhaling in that one questionnaire. I know that he also introduced some questions about drinking in later questionnaires as well. The thing is that I don’t remember seeing ‘inhaling’ in any of the tables.

      • Some French Bloke Says:

        I don’t remember seeing ‘inhaling’ in any of the tables

        Yes! Fact is that the ‘Final Report’ (published 22 June 2004) doesn’t mention inhaling at all…

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