Do you want to stop smoking? Like many of us you´ve probably tried numerous treatments such as patches, gum, acupuncture, hypnosis, etc – but – you´re still hooked. There are so many reasons not to smoke. Yet it´s one of the hardest addictions to give up.  And living here in Marbella doesn´t make it any easier!

But now there is another treatment that is generating interest among the scientific world. From the seeds of the “Golden Rain Tree” (Cytisus Laburnum) there is a product that has been in use for over fifty years in Eastern Europe and during the Second World War Russian soldiers even called it “false tobacco”.

In the West, until recently, this treatment was largely unknown as no proper testing or trials had been done. This plant based product has been recognised as the closest substance to nicotine and is called Cytisine. In the brain it acts just like nicotine and stimulates the release of pleasure chemicals such as dopamine, which means that withdrawal symptoms from nicotine are significantly reduced.

A large study, published in the highly respected medical journal, New England Journal of Medicine, has shown some exciting results. Cytisine (taken as a small tablet) in combination with what´s known as behavioural support was compared to nicotine replacement therapy, in this case patches. After a month more smokers had stopped completely on cytisine compared to patches (40 % versus 31%) and after 6 months and the cytisine group still showed clear benefit compared to patches. In other studies cytisine has been shown to double your chances of quitting compared with placebo (dummy tablet).

For best results cytisine should be taken as part of a behaviour change programme, incorporating education, peer support and behaviour change techniques. So if you want to stop smoking this year, why not take a helping hand from nature ?

Rachel Garrod PhD

Categories: Uncategorised
Post by: Atlantic Clinic on 20 Sep 2019