KARACHI: Karachi Sports Foundation (KSF) and leading doctors of Essa Lab on Monday organised a seminar for the awareness of sportspersons and citizens on the occasion of World No Tobacco Day in order to prevent consumption of tobacco which can be harmful for health and can severely affect the fitness levels.

World Health Organisation in 1987 created “World No Tobacco Day” to draw global attention to the causes and consequences by tobacco epidemic to the people. Every year WHO and countries around the globe celebrate World No Tobacco Day on May 31.

Dr Anum Amir, senior manager Allied Health Services at Essa Lab, conducted the main session to educate people, especially athletes, on what harm the usage of tobacco can bring to their health and how to refrain from it.

In her session, while interacting with athletes, she described the negative impacts of smoking on the body of an athlete. “One of the main impacts of smoking is that it decrease the lung functioning which means low stamina and muscles which results in fatigue due to inadequate oxygen supply,” Dr Anum.

“Secondly, it adversely affects heart and circulatory system, blood vessels constrict and get blocked because of plaque which dampens the endurance, and it also increases the blood pressure. Smoking can lead to greater chances of injuries to happen while playing or training,” she added.

“Tobacco consuming athletes’ heart, muscles, and brain do not receive enough oxygen which may result in mental and physical acuity dropping. This causes athletes to faint or make falter during exercising. This means injury to a smoker athlete will take longer to heal.”

She further said that, Pakistan is ranked 15th in the world on illness cases due to tobacco. “Every year we witness number of deaths or diseases by consumption of Tobacco. We need to spread the awareness as much to reduce the numbers.

On the occasion, Chairman KSF Asif Azeem said, celebrating World No Tobacco Day is to take a responsibility to aware people on smoking and other tobacco consumption, especially our athletes and the youth. “I would like to thank Prof. Dr. Farhan Essa Abdullah and his team for conducting such fine seminar to enlighten all of us on the harmful affects of smoking on athletes and how they can be prevented,” said Asif.

Published in Dawn, June 1st, 2021

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