Being surrounded by smokers in public may be more damaging for your health that you might think say researchers , according to a new study that shows there may be a greater risk posed to non-smokers from passive smoke or second-hand smoke in public than previous research has shown.
Although past research has focused on studying the health risks of cohabitating with a smoker, researchers say this is the first study to examine the risks of additional exposure, including at work, bars or restaurants where smoking is allowed.
Researchers sampled nearly 5,000 British men and examined the correlation between their blood cotinine levels, a by-product of nicotine, and the risk of coronary heart disease. The data shows higher blood cotinine levels in non-smokers increased their risk of coronary heart disease by up to 60 percent. Past studies placed that number at 30 percent, leading researchers to believe that the risks of passive smoking may have been underestimated.
Thus researchers say their results show evidence, suggesting that exposure to passive smoking is a public health hazard and should be minimized .