World No Tobacco Day is observed by the World Health Organisation on May 31 every year to draw attention to the many hazards of tobacco and the prevalence of this habit across the world. In India alone, tobacco kills more than 1 million people each year, accounting to 9.5 per cent of all deaths in the country. The most common way tobacco kills is from cardiovascular diseases, accounting for 48 per cent tobacco-induced deaths in India.

Smoking and tobacco addiction have been associated with a number of diseases including cancer, obesity, heart disease, stroke among others. So it is but natural that giving up smoking is bound to exert some positive effects on your body. Knowing what happens to your body when you give up smoking is one of the important ways that can motivate you to kick this habit. Here is what the World Health Organisation says about the changes that happen in your body when you stop smoking:

20 minutes after you stop smoking a cigarette, your heart rate and blood pressure which are elevated, drop to normal.

12 hours after you have smoked your last cigarette, the carbon monoxide level in your blood drops to normal and your oxygen levels come back to its normal capacity.

If you have given up smoking for 2-12 weeks, you will notice that your blood circulation will drastically improve. This automatically leads to better lung functioning.

After about 9 months of quitting smoking, common symptoms associated with smoking such as coughing and shortness of breath decreases.

After a year of giving up smoking, your risk of coronary heart disease is about half that of smokers. The risk of you dying from cardiovascular diseases drops drastically.

In about 10 years, your risk of cancer falls to about half compared to that of a smoker’s risk of cancer.

In about 15 years, the risk of coronary heart disease is as low as that of a nonsmoker.