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The acute effects of aerobic exercise on cigarette smoking Mikhail, Carmen


The effects of two intensities of exercise and a no-exercise control condition on cigarette smoking were investigated in 18 men, aged 20 to 30 years. Each subject, who was blind to the purpose of the study, came to the laboratory at the same time on three consecutive days to pedal a stationary bicycle at a work-load sufficient to maintain a heart rate between 130-135 b.p.m. or 160-165 b.p.m. or to be monitored while seated in a chair, for 10 minutes. Each subject was then ushered into a waiting room where he remained for one hour while indices of smoking behavior including number and weight of cigarettes consumed, cigarette duration (time elapsed from the instance the cigarette was lit to the instance it was extinguished) and number of puffs taken for the first cigarette post-exercise were surreptitiously observed by a confederate. Subjects also self-monitored cigarette intake during the three days of the study. Urine samples were collected pre- and 15 and 64 minutes following exercise. The only smoking measure found to be significantly affected by exercise was cigarette duration, which was inversely related to exercise intensity. Additional analyses revealed that high-intensity exercise significantly acidified the urine, and that a significant inverse correlation existed between urinary pH change and cigarette duration for this condition. The implications of this finding are discussed in regard to Schachter's hypothesis of nicotine addiction.

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