Serum total anti-oxidant capacity of some Nigerian cigarette smokers
Cigarette smoke has been reported to contain free radicals. The interaction of these free radicals with the body defense system and associated health risk among Nigerian smokers have remained scarcely investigated despite the high numbers of smokers in our society. This study thus, investigates the serum total antioxidant capacity of some Nigerian cigarette smokers in apparent good health and who have been smoking between 1-4 sticks of cigarette/day for about 1-3 years. Twenty(20) consenting smokers between 19 and 45 years consisting of fifteen (15) males and 5 females were recruited after examination to certify their apparent good health. Twenty (20) non-smokers, who were matched in age and sex were included as control subjects. Serum total antioxidant capacity (TAC) was observed to be higher in male non-smokers (1.92±0.22mM) when compared with their female counterparts (1.88±0.16mM). Among smokers, the males subjects showed a decreased TAC (Male: 1.45±0.23mM and female; 1.65±0.16mM) with a strong statistical difference between the TAC of smokers and non-smokers (t=2.095, n=20 and P0.05). Data suggest lower oxidant defense and hence, increased susceptibility to free radical associated diseases especially among the male smokers. Conserted efforts need to be made by governmental agents to enforce legislation that could reduce the rate of smoking. Campaigns should also be initiated to educate the lay public on the dangers of cigarette smoking.
Keywords: Cigarette, Free radicals, Anti-oxidant, Smokers, Cancer.